Community Production of bio-briquettes in deprived localities
Poverty and fuel poverty and thus heating in the winter is a great problem in some poor areas of Hungary. Such was the case in the small village of Told in Eastern Hungary. Having recognised the complex problem, an NGO (Igazgyöngy Alapítvány /Real Pearl Foundation) elaborated a complex social, educational and skill development program to enable those willing to participate to maintain themselves. The first step was to generate trust and acceptance and the foundation approached the residents of the village (and many other villages) via artistic (and other) education of children. Later adults and several other skill development, health, social and job generation component followed.
Within this aid system, the NGO–introduced an adapted biobriquette manufacturing program .Some 20 residents produce biobriquette from agricultural waste (sunflower and corn residues, straw). Manufacturing takes place for a few months a year. The amount manufactured has been sufficient to provide supplementary fuel for the families of the participants
Because the manufacturing process is time consuming, and the heating value is low, this type is biobriquette was suitable for supplementary fuel. However, the experience accumulated paved the way for stepping forward, and in 2019 the community with the help of Real Pearl Foundation procured a chopping machine and a used professional biobriquette machine, which will allow the foundation to employ 2 people in full ti

Resources needed

 community building/development
 A volunteer expert who trains the manufacturing process and organises the logistics
  c.. EUR 2000 for the investment for the manual production
 c. EUR 10 000 for the investment for the phase 2 chopping and manufacturing machine

Evidence of success

The output is sufficient for the entire village and will be sold to the community at some 70% of the going market price and being local, it will not add the transportation cost of fuel to be purchased from other settlements. The production with the acquired machine is in experimental phase now (February 2019).
 Has provided fuel for over 20 families – now for 7th year
 Joy of common sensible work –initial reluctance of some turned into volunteering

Difficulties encountered

 Time consuming, inefficient process
 Low energy content and low energy density
 Manual production is mainly suitable for complementary fuel

Potential for learning or transfer

 It has proved transferable in Hungary already: the manu-al production model of biobriquette is applied in some 10 locations.
 It is transferable to countries where there are isolated rural poor, even disintegrated communities, with low skill inhabitants, especially roma communities.

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Main institution
Észak-Alföld, Hungary (Magyarország)
Start Date
August 2019
End Date


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