Philippine agriculture

Portable, university-developed coconut dehusker ready for commercial deployment

Gelo Gonzales
Portable, university-developed coconut dehusker ready for commercial deployment

SAFITEK DEHUSKER

Photo from DOST

The locally developed dehusker weighs just 75 kilograms, making it much lighter than the usual 350 to 750-kilogram models available on the market

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) on Monday, June 6, announced that a new, locally-developed coconut dehusker known as “SAFitek Coco Dehusker” is ready for commercialization, with the team currently looking for commercial fabricators to which they can license out the technology. 

The dehusker was developed by a team of researchers from Jose Rizal Memorial State University – Tampilisan Campus in Zamboanga del Norte. The team said it is designed to cater to all sizes and varieties of Philippine coconuts, and is able to dehusk more than 500 per hour. The team also touts the machine’s portability, with a body weight of 75 kilograms, which the team says is considerably lighter than the average weight of dehuskers currently available in the market, which can weigh anywhere from 350 to 750 kilograms. The heavy weight of currently available dehuskers makes them hard to transport for farmers. 

The team also said about 2.5 million coconut farmers in the country may benefit from the device, which mostly currently rely on manual dehusking, and are at higher risk of injury. The device will also make the job faster, said the team. 

“We are looking for business partners, fabricators, distributors who want to produce and distribute the SAFitek Coco Dehusker,” said Yhebron Lagud, the team’s entrepreneurial lead. 

SAFitek was developed by a team composed of engineers Kalfred Doydora, and Jeward Dagodog, and Jayrald Misperos. Helping the team commercialize the product are Yhebron Lagud, head of JRMSU-TC’s research unit; Jariet Adriatico from the JRMSU’s Innovation and Technology Support Office; and Ma. Corina E. Camazo of the JRMSU’s Knowledge and Technology Transfer Office. 

The technology was the regional winner of the 2019 Regional Invention Contest and Exhibit (RICE). The DOST-IX and DOST’s Technology Application and Promotion Insitute helped the technology get a utility model certificate by the Intellectual Property Office, making it the first piece of technology from the university to receive intellectual property protection. 

Aside from its plans to commercialize the dehusker, the DOST-IX also approved the team a grant of P1.2 million that will allow the technology to be deployed in some areas in province “to further popularize and test” it. – Rappler.com

Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.