Media Coverage

Share Your Attitude of Gratitude by Helping Women Fight Hunger Worldwide!

Huffington Post — November 2014

"The Thanksgiving Holiday gives us time to stop and think about all that we have to be thankful for in the United States. It's also a great time to reach out and help those in need around the world. Worldwide, 1.5 billion people live in poverty. Sixty percent of the world's hungry are women. Local organizations are caring for women by providing resources and a means to make a living. These organizations are stopping the cycle of poverty by teaching women how to work their way out of poverty."

Northland College, St. Paul nonprofit partner to offer student internship

Duluth News Tribune — November 2014

"Compatible Technology International a global nonprofit based in St. Paul, recently raised $30,000 to start a partnership and internship for students at Northland College in Ashland. Both institutions initiated the partnership as a way to honor for CTI executive director Malcolm McLean."

Pearl Millet Thresher: Labor Saving Tool for Women


Africa Agribusiness Magazine — December 2014

"Pearl millet, one of the most extensively cultivated cereals in the world and a key staple crop in the African Sahel, is particularly important to the food security of smallholder farmers in arid regions. With over 230,000 millet farmers in Senegal, over 3.9 million millet farmers in West Africa, and over 95 percent of these farmers using the ancient mortar and pestle to thresh millet, the demand and need for an improved technology are immense."

Grain Tools Help Women in Senegal Thrive

Innovate Development — October 2014

"Compatible Technology International (CTI), a nonprofit based in St. Paul, Minnesota, develops simple manual tools that allow farmers in developing countries to move beyond subsistence farming to develop microenterprises. In 2014, CTI launched a pilot program in Senegal that put three new grain tools into the hands of 12,000 people in 51 villages."

Rugged tech designer steps up its innovation — May 2014

"A non-profit US organisation that develops affordable farming and water purification tools for families in developing countries is moving to a new strategy: selling its tech directly to communities of poor people rather than only to NGOs who give it away for free.

Compatible Technology International (CTI), which is based in Minnesota, United States, designs and sells innovative, affordable devices that help people avoid waterborne infection, improve food production and boost incomes. It has ongoing projects in Haiti, Nicaragua and several African countries.

While CTI historically sold technologies to other charitable organisations that distributed them to farmers, its new strategy for 2014-2017 will see CTI teams also work directly with local partners to support manufacturing, sales and training."

Castings Sustain Communities

Modern Casting Magazine — March 2014

"We seek out fabricators and suppliers that can help us produce quality products at a rate that's affordable so we can impact more lives and provide tools to the families who need them most." -CTI Executive Director Alexandra Spieldoch

Pearl Millet Processing Made Easier

Appropriate Technology Magazine — December 2013

"Sub-Saharan Africa loses $4 billion dollars worth of grain each year postharvest. $4 billion is equivalent to the amount of food aid sent to the region over the past decade alone. One of the primary causes of the wasted food lies in the inefficient, labour-intensive postharvest processing methods smallholder farmers use to thresh and winnow their harvest into edible grain. Now a grant of $100,000 from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is being used to reduce postharvest losses and alleviate these barriers to smallholder grain production."...

Tools Trialled to Curb Post-harvest Millet Loss — July 2013

"New tools for processing pearl millet are to be sent for testing in Senegal as part of a project which has just received a US$100,000 grant.

Pearl millet — the most widely grown type of millet — and sorghum make up three-quarters of the calories eaten by people in low-income households in Sub-Saharan Africa.

But few technologies have been developed to reduce the drudgery and time involved in harvesting and processing the crops — particularly for women, who do most of the labour — says Alesha Black, a programme officer at the Gates Foundation, which awarded the grant.

The set of four tools — a stripper, thresher, winnower and grinder — will be sent to 10–25 villages in Senegal. They will be assessed during the year-long pilot project to test whether they help farmers to increase the yield and quality of grain, and whether the work is less time consuming."...

Advancing Global Food Security

Advancing Global Food Security: The Power of Science, Trade, and Business - The Chicago Council on Global Affairs — May 2013

"Compatible technology International (CTI) is harnessing the power of innovation and technology to address the issue of postharvest loss on a sustainable, long-term basis. The NGO creates practical tools to help communities in the developing world address their food and water challenges. In Senegal CTI worked with pearl millet farmers (many female) to develop hand-operated grain processing devices that allow farmers to capture 90 percent of the grain and produce edible grain 10 times faster than with traditional mortar-and-pestle methods [...] CTI’s innovative work reveals the capacity of smart, simple technology to address agriculture’s major challenges."

Helping Global Farmers

Macalester College — January 2013

"As a communications intern for Compatible Technology Institute, Brianna Besch ’13 spent her time last semester explaining how designing innovative tools—such as a bicycle-powered potato slicer—can help poor farmers get enough to eat."...

Post-Harvest Technology Solutions: Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast

Global Food for Thought Blog - The Chicago Council on Global Affairs — December 2012

"There is little reliable data on post-harvest loss (PHL) and until recently it hasn’t played a big part in agricultural investment strategies. Only four percent of development assistance goes to agriculture and little of it for post-harvest programs. In light of high prices and lack of food availability, there seems to be new recognition that the world community can do more to prevent post-harvest loss as a means to meet world food demand"...

Smooth Operation: Engineering Professor, Student Study Peanut Grinder for Local Nonprofit

University of St. Thomas — September 2012

"Would you believe that the road to food security is paved with ... peanut butter?

It's one of the ways, and we're not talking partially hydrogenated Skippy-brand peanut butter. Just ask Dr. Jim Ellingson, assistant professor in St. Thomas' School of Engineering, and junior mechanical engineering major Noel Naughton.

The pair spent their summer vacation grinding 25 pounds of roasted, unsalted peanuts for a study that will help local nonprofit Compatibility Technology International (you might remember them from Friday's Newsroom story "Dr. Camille George and the Future of Breadfruit"), pave this road. The organization creates a range of "practical food and water tools that empower the global poor to better feed and support themselves."...

Compatible Technology International at Mill City Farmers Market

Mill City Times — September 2012

"Compatible Technology International was the Community Booth at the September 22 Market.  It is a nonprofit organization that alleviates hunger and poverty in the developing world by designing and distributing simple, life-changing food and water technologies.  At the Market, they demonstrated grain grinders, their “tools for harvest, hope for the hungry.”...

Rock the Vine 3 at Saint Croix Vineyards

City Pages — June 2012

"Sometimes, it's just nice to get out of the city. Rock The Vine 3 was set in the picturesque grounds of the Saint Croix Vineyards in Stillwater, and treated music fans to a sun-kissed day filled with good wine, or wine fans to a day filled with good music, depending on which way you looked at it. Either way, it was all for a good cause due to the benevolence of local non-profits Rock The Cause and Compatible Technology International, as Halloween, Alaska, Solid Gold, White Light Riot, Haley Bonar, and Farewell Milwaukee (amongst others) all put on entertaining performances to delight the radiant crowd on a sweltering summer day in Stillwater."...