We wanted to create a travel coffee system that was convenient, durable and also sustainable. Out of these desires, FLTRgo was born...
Below is a list of design choices and decisions that were made to ensure the FLTRgo is an amazing coffee filter perfect for travel and also good for the planet.
1. Bamboo: An extremely sustainable wood which is as strong as steel (Newsweek Article) so you don't have to worry about it breaking in your bag while traveling. Additionally, it conducts very little heat.
2. Cotton: With proper cleaning our organic non-GMO cotton filter can be used hundred of times. Its extremely tight weave is perfect for filtering coffee.
3. Hinge Design: We wanted to make the FLTRgo as portable as possible and with our hinged handle design it can fold up and fit inside your pant pocket or bag easily.
PROTOTYPE REVIEW (VIDEO): Obviously we think the FLTRgo is great, but we also created a few prototypes which we sent out to influencers on YouTube. Check out the video below from Tim @ EverydayTacticalVids as he took his filter on a camping adventure!
ZERO WASTE: Paper coffee filters can only be used once and typically aren't accepted by recycling centers, meaning they end up in landfills. With FLTRgo, our filter can be re-used hundreds of times, with proper care - lessening the environmental impact of your cup of coffee.
As much as we are committed to a great cup of coffee and to travel adventures, we are also committed to ethical and environmental responsibility. That is why we are sourcing our organic cotton through fair trade channels and are working to make transparency in our supply chain a priority.
Organic cotton is better for the environment, for farmers, for textile manufacturing workers, and for the consumer. Our sourcing partners are certified by Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), the top standard for textiles made from organic fibers worldwide. GOTS requirements include environmental standards along the entire supply chain of organic textiles and fair trade social criteria as well. "All phases of organic fiber and fabric production must be inspected and certified according to GOTS' strict, uniform standards in order to obtain the certification label 'organic.'"
The certification outlet our suppliers use is OneCert. OneCert not only certifies by GOTS standards but also six other standards including the National Organic Program-USDA. Their process includes on-site inspections.
We are also using food-grade bamboo (used for cutting boards and kitchen utensils) for the ring and handle. Bamboo is highly sustainable and good for the environment. "Bamboo’s fast growth rate and high productivity results in significant volumes of fiber produced per area." Bamboo plantations restore degraded land and reduce deforestation through the provision of a sustainable source of fiber. (http://www.ecoplanetbamboo.com/about-us)
Here is the story behind the FLTRgo...
My wife and I work online and are full-time digital nomads (34 countries on five continents in the last two years), run the travel blog Uncontained Life, and are coffee fanatics. In our adventures, particularly outside of city centers, we had difficulty finding a good cup (or four) of coffee. We did find espresso drinks but we prefer filtered coffee.
I started looking for a product I could take with me, but, French Presses, V60 drips, Aeropress, and other coffee makers are bulky, heavy, or require disposable filters. I started thinking about how to make a filter that was reusable, lightweight, could make multiple cups of coffee, and took up very little space in my luggage.
In June of 2016, we flew to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, and were offered a cup of coffee from from the host of our accommodations. I watched as he boiled water, added coffee grounds,and then poured the coffee through what looked like a sock! Luckily it wasn’t a sock. It was a fabric filter on a wire ring. When I asked my host where he got the filter, he sent me to an eclectic shop in Rio’s Chinatown where they sold plumbing supplies, electronics, and these fabric coffee filters. I bought a dozen.
While these filters met the basic requirements for making filtered coffee, they had a few drawbacks. The fabric quality was not so good, which affected the taste of the coffee. The stitching fell apart after awhile. The wire ring was not very strong and would bend under the weight of coffee and water and become warped during travel.
I thought to myself, “I think I can make something better than this!”
And, over the next few months, I did.
Here are the different rewards for supporting our Kickstarter project.
Risks and challenges
There is no doubt that FLTRgo will face obstacles. At every step of the design, prototyping, patent process, and marketing, we faced challenges. But for every speed bump we encountered, we used three simple principles: 1) Name the problem; 2) Identify the solution; 3) Utilize the correct people to reach the goal. These three principles also work for anticipating future risks and challenges.
We have partners that specialize in overseas sourcing, manufacturing, and logistics. We will continue to work alongside our partners in the coming weeks, with the goal to be ready to make the first FLTRgo manufacturing order once the campaign concludes.
There are, of course, some things that are out of our control. The lead time (how long it takes to produce and ship the products) would increase commensurate with the success of the Kickstarter campaign. Of course, we will continue to communicate with our backers along the way, and will work tirelessly to deliver the filters.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)