The Avogo is a stylish paring tool designed by Brighton College pupils Pietro Pignatti and Matias Paz Linares. It is designed to enable the user to safely and efficiently cut open and pit an avocado, at home or on the go.
To get your own Avogo, head to the Old Brightonians shop here. Read on to find out all about the history of the Avogo and the impact that it has on the Brighton community and beyond.
The story behind the product
The idea started in 2017 when Sarah Awbery tasked Pietro and Matias, in their DT lessons, with creating a product to facilitate daily life. The development began with the idea that they wanted to create a functional product that did not compromise style or practicality. The idea was first born when Pietro, a boarder at Brighton College, encountered the problem of not being able to have breakfast in the mornings when he was travelling to school. He would often take avocadoes on the train and felt uncomfortable bringing a knife on the train to cut open the avocado. This led the team to create a product that could cut and destone an avocado, retaining the elements of practicality and style. They entered their design into the Design Ventura Independent Schools’ category (a competition fought out by 2500 independent schools). They won first place - credited to their design’s balance of function and form. They then went on to produce 250 units and sell them on Kickstarter, with the profits donated to Brighton College’s scholarship fund. Now we have relaunched the Avogo with a sleeker, more stylish, and higher quality design. We can now continue with our mission of using our platform to impact communities both at our school and abroad directly.
We created the Avogo to solve problems. All businesses have a duty to solve problems, not create them. This is why we are a non-profit that strives to reduce the impact our industry creates. We only use small artisans to have the Avogo produced using local, sustainable materials. We also only support organisations where our donation supports the local community.
Production of the product
The Avogo is manufactured by small artisan manufacturers in Italy. The knife component is crafted by hand by Coltelleria Saladini, from Scarperia, a small town in Mugello where there is one knifemaker per 1000 people. Coltelleria Saladini is a family run business that has been making knives since the 1800s. The Avogo is produced with the highest quality carbon inox steel and sharpened by hand. The packaging is produced in Florence, Italy by an artisan bag maker, using 100% organic cotton.
Who we are
Matias is South American and understands the effects of the agro-industry in countries like Chile. Here the lack of government intervention has created huge disparities and issues between workers and international corporations, where the workers’ fundamental human rights are compromised for profits. Pietro is Italian, which is why the production is only done in Italy (50 miles from his home city of Florence), and why the design takes influence from Alessi products. Both have always been passionate for innovation, but what drives them as a group is their desire to have a positive social impact. Their sense of community extends beyond Avogo: Matias leads the Syrian refugee project at Brighton College, and Pietro runs a charitable Gelato delivery service that supports a London Homeless shelter.
What we hope to achieve through this product
Throughout the project, we have been continuously thinking about how we can improve our product, but more importantly, how we can contribute to communities. We hope to achieve our primary goal of raising awareness of issues that may not be in the foreground of people’s minds, with a focus on helping particularly vulnerable communities. All the money raised through Avogo goes directly to an excellent cause to optimise our impacts. In the future, we hope to see Avogo grow into a well-known utensil that can be found in outlets around the world, like Liberty or Harrods, so we can increase our impact of donation to the charities we support.
Charities we support
We have chosen to carry on supporting our school community's Opening Doors Scholarship fund whilst also supporting areas that have been negatively impacted by the unethical cultivation of avocados. Recently, we formed a partnership with MODATIMA, a charity based in Chile’s largest avocado-producing province, Petorca. MODATIMA is one of the leading organisations campaigning for the human right to water and the ethical and sustainable cultivation of avocados. By supporting MODATIMA, we hope to raise awareness of this issue whilst also bringing about immediate, meaningful change to the communities most affected.
The Avogo is the essential tool for every avocado lover. Get yours from the Old Brightonians online shop here.