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HiGi Energy wanted to address the problem of agricultural waste in the Philippines. Major waste includes coconut shell, coconut husks, and coconut coir dust. Approximately 500 million coconut trees in the Philippines produce wastes of 4.1 million tonnes coconut husks, 1.8 million tonnes coconut shell, and 4.5 million tonnes coconut frond. Rice straw is another agricultural waste amounting up to 5 million tons per year across the country. On the flip side, 65 percent of the 100 million population still use firewood and charcoal. This accounts for more than 1,500 tonnes of solid fuels consumed per month in the barbecue industry of Philippines being sourced from deforestation, mainly illegal logging. HiGi Energy aims to both help reduce tree cuttings and help manage agricultural waste by converting it into biofuels to serve this market.
HiGi Energy converts the agricultural waste into charcoal briquettes serving the Korean barbecue restaurants in the Philippines. The business model of HiGi is to assist the existing small-scale producers with standardizing their product quality meeting the demand of HiGi’s clients, hence enabling the small-scale producers to produce high-quality charcoal briquettes which could be sold at a higher price. HiGi creates a package of offering to influence the buying decision of the purchasers and hence, illegal logging sourced fuels will have no markets and eventually the activities would be put to a halt.