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What are charcoal and charcoal briquette usage based on their shape and raw material?

Updated: Sep 14, 2023

Everyone loves grill and barbeque foods, don't we? Not only in Western countries and East Asia countries (Japan, Korea), but also Middle Eastern Asia like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UEA, and even where most of coconut charcoal are originated, Indonesia.

Actually, as we know, there are many types of grill fuels which are usually being used such as gas, charcoal, and charcoal briquette. However, for grill and barbeque maniac, there are no other options except charcoal and charcoal briquettes! Why? Because, these charcoals could give different kind of taste and special scent which make it so special for several grill foods.

But, in the market, there are so many types of it with different shape and materials. We will try to explain it in very simple way for you!

1. Coconut Shell Charcoal

In Indonesia, this coconut shell charcoal is the most common grill fuel for any types of traditional foods, such as Sate, chicken, fish, or goat meat grill! Since the raw materials (coconut shell) are easy to get in these kind of tropical countries and the making process is not too hard, this charcoal is relatively much cheaper compare to the others in South East Asia countries.

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Even coconut shell charcoal does not give any special kind of aromatic scent like wood charcoal, but this natural charcoal cold give relatively long burning time with slightly high temperature.

Coconut Shell Charcoal
Coconut Shell Charcoal

2. Hardwood Lump Charcoal

Another type of natural charcoal which are very popular in Western, East Asia, Middle East Asia countries. Just like we mentioned before, wood charcoal has really nice characteristic of scent. Even sometimes it doesn't need long carbonization process just like briquette charcoal, due to the absence of any filler material, wood charcoal produces less ash content at the end of burn.

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No additional material, means there are less volatile matter with higher fixed carbon and calorific value. Due to this reason, wood charcoal could give higher burn temperature which shorter the grill time and giving the best final result. On the other hand, due to the wide range of shape and size differences, it is more difficult in terms of logistic. Indonesia is very well known with its great quality of wood lump charcoal, such as Halaban wood, Tamarind wood, Mahoni wood, and Cocoa wood.

Indonesia hardwood lump charcoal
Hardwood Charcoal

3. Coconut Charcoal Briquette

In general, there are two commons of coconut charcoal briquettes shape which are pillow shape and cube shape.

> Pillow Shape

This type of coconut charcoal briquette is usually used as barbeque fuel. Although, it is not as good as wood charcoal, but this kind of shape is still popular since it is cheaper and give constant burning temperature. In general, this charcoal briquette is made from natural coconut shell and filler (e.g. starch).

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Some of characteristics of this pillow shape are, it has more uniform shape and size, and with low temperature, long burning hour, coconut charcoal briquette pillow shape is very good for roasting food that needs longer time. On the other side, due to the mixing process with filler, it produces much more ashes compare to natural charcoal.

Indonesia coconut charcoal briquette 100% from coconut shell
Coconut charcoal briquette 100% from coconut shell

> Cube Hookah (Cube Shape)

This type of coconut shell charcoal is very popular in Middle East Asia. It is widely used as burning fuel for Arabic traditional vape or tobacco called Shisha. This charcoal has very different characteristic and specification compare to others. What it needs, is, burn in a very long time with much lower temperature. Furthermore, the flame color, the perfect cube shape, and the amount of ash content, are usually being the most important things to be considered.

Coconut Charcoal Briquette Cube Shape for shisha
Coconut Charcoal Briquette

4. Sawdust Charcoal Briquette, Wood Briquette

Due to premium price and the logistic difficulties, many people would prefer sawdust charcoal briquette, instead of natural wood charcoal. As Both are made up from wood material, more less sawdust charcoal briquette has same characteristic as wood charcoal. Moreover, recently, there are also wood briquette which usually being mixed with coconut shell charcoal.

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This type of sawdust charcoal briquette and wood briquette are very popular in Middle East and East Asia countries, especially Japan. Recently, sawdust charcoal briquette demand is increasing due to its low cost and high performance. Also, its characteristics which is similar to wood charcoal, sawdust charcoal briquette is also usually used as its substitution.

Indonesia high quality sawdust Charcoal Briquette
Sawdust Charcoal Briquette

5. Charcoal Powder/Meshed Charcoal

Not only used as grill and barbeque fuel, charcoal's main function is also as active carbon. Even in Indonesia, beside coconut shell charcoal, there are also active and meshed carbon from palm kernel shell. These active carbon charcoal usually uses as liquid and gas purify for pollution control and filter any unwanted composition in petrochemical, cosmetics, and foods industries

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Meshed Charcoal, Charcoal Powder
Meshed Charcoal, Charcoal Powder

Let us know if you have any charcoal sample or factory visit!

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Keyword: Arang, arang briket, briket sawdust, sawdust charcoal briquette, sawdust charcoal, coconut chell charcoal, coconut charcoal briquette, charcoal, wood charcoal, arang kayu, 木炭、オガ炭、豆炭, チャコール、فحم نشارة الخشب, فحم

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