Moringa leaves and a pod
Photo Credit: delange.org

Moringa Seeds

Treatment Type: Step 1 - Flocculation/Coagulation

IMPORTANT: This treatment must be used together with a Step 2 treatment. It should not be used as the only water treatment method. Water treated with Moringa seeds should not be treated with chlorine or any Step 2 treatments that include chlorine.

Contents

Description of Technology Recommended

Moringa Seed

Moringa Oleifera Seed
Illustration credit: WELL

The seed of the Moringa tree (Moringa oleifera) is a natural flocculant/coagulant. That is, when dried Moringa seeds or seed powder is added to water it helps to treat turbid or cloudy water by pulling together floating particles—including dirt, other solids, and some germs and worms—and when the water settles, the particles sink to the bottom of the water container. This method helps reduce dirt and germs that cause disease and illness, but it does not make the water completely free of germs and therefore Moringa seeds should not be used as the only method of treating water . A Step 2 treatment, such as filtering or solar disinfection, must also be used, however Step 2 treatments with chlorine should never be used as they may have an adverse chemical reaction with the Moringa seeds.

Moringa trees can be found in many places because their leaves, wood, and seed oil are also used as medicine, fire fuel, and food. In addition to the powder made from grinding dried Moringa seeds, one can use Moringa seed presscakes that remain after making Moringa seed oil, sometimes called Ben oil. Moringa trees grow best in dry, sandy soil, and grow quickly. The dried seed powder can only be used for one water treatment, but is biodegradable, so it is easily disposed after treatment.


Advantages/Benefits Disadvantages/Limitations
  • Helps to reduce dirt, solids, large particles, and some germs that cause highly turbid or cloudy water.
  • Increases efficiency and performance of other treatment methods, especially filtration.
  • Moringa trees grow in dry climates and grow quickly, so seeds are usually readily available.
  • Little to no capital or operating costs.
  • Doesn't alter the taste of the water.
  • The solids strained from the water are usually biodegradable.
  • Does not remove all germs.
  • Does not work well for mildly turbid water.
  • Indication that it does not work well when chlorination is used as a secondary treatment, so it cannot be used in combination with chlorine.
  • Requires education on safe water storage and hygiene behavior.

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Instructions for Building and Using Technology

Moringa Seed

Materials Needed

Dried Moringa Seeds
Photo Credit: ilovemoringa.com

Preparing the Seeds and Treating Your Water

  1. Dry the seeds or presscake for 3 days in direct sunlight. If using fruit pods, remove seeds from fruit before drying.
  2. Discard any soft or discolored seeds.
  3. Remove the dark outer skin or hull, then grind the seeds to a powder. It takes 15-20 ground Moringa seeds (or four heaping teaspoons of powder, or the contents of four rounded soda bottle tops of powder) to clear 20 liters of water. The powder can be stored for up to one month for later use if stored in a container with a tight-fitting lid or cover, in a cool dark place.
  4. In a clean bottle, mix the powder vigorously with a little clean water to make a runny paste, then add it to the water you want to clear in the treatment container.
  5. Stir quickly for about thirty seconds.
  6. Then stir the water slowly and regularly for five to ten minutes.
  7. Cover the treatment container and let it settle for 1 to 2 hours. If moved or shaken before then, clarification will take much longer or fail to reach completion.
  8. After the water has settled for at least 1 hour, the water is ready for secondary treatment, such as disinfection. If not treating immediately, pour the water into a clean storage container. Be careful to pour out only the water and leave the solids in the treatment container. Or, if you have a clean piece of cloth, stretch it over the opening of the storage container to catch the solids as you pour the cleared water from the treatment container into the storage container.

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Recommended Education

The information below describes things you can do that will help the solution described above work better.

Safe Water Storage

When you work hard to collect, transport and treat your water to make it clean and safe to drink, you need to handle and store it properly to keep it clean and safe. Sometimes, the quality of stored water can become worse. To ensure that it is safe, water must be handled carefully while it is being carried and it must be stored in vessels that protect it from further contamination or recontamination. There are some kinds of containers that can help prevent contaminating (or making dirty) your clean water. But sometimes it is difficult to find or buy a good storage container.

The following characteristics are the most important and necessary things to make sure that your container provides safe water storage:

  1. is only used for treated water;
  2. has a strong and tightly fitting lid or cover-to make it difficult for animals or bugs to access;
  3. has a tap, spigot or narrow opening-to prevent hands from directly touching the water.

The following additional characteristics will improve the safety of your storage container, but are not necessary for safe storage:

Dos and Donts of Safe Storage Containers
Illustration Credit: CAWST

For wide necked containers, encourage people to keep them covered and design a system for removing water that avoids hands coming into contact with the water. This could be a long handled ladle that allows them to collect the water without touching it or a spigot at the bottom of the container. They should also be encouraged to regularly clean their container.

Hygiene Practices to Keep Water Safe and Clean

Clean water vessels and keep them clean

Stored water can become unsafe when it is touched by people with dirty hands, when animals drink from it, when it is poured into a dirty vessel, when dirt or dust gets in the water, and when dirty cups are used to scoop up water. To prevent water from becoming unsafe at home:

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Contacts for Advice and Technical Assistance

Organization: Centre National de Semences Forestières (CNSF)
Assistance Type: Technical Assistance
Specialties: Water Specialities:
Moringa Seeds

Address: Kossodo, Route de Kaya
01 B.P 2682
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso 01
Telephone #: (226) 35 61 11/35 80 13
Fax #: (226) 35 61 10
Email: cnsf@fasonet.bf
Website: http://www.cnsf.gov.bf/
Keywords: Moringa Seeds, Ouagadougou, , Burkina Faso

Organization: Forestry Commission of Ghana
Assistance Type: Technical Assistance
Specialties: Water Specialities:
Moringa Seeds

Address: Forestry Services Division
P. O. Box GP 257
Accra, Ghana
Telephone #: (233) 31 22921 - 4/31 22926
Fax #: (233) 31 22837/31 23339
Email: info@fsd.fcghana.com
saidoo@hq.fcghana.com
Website: http://www.fcghana.com/
Keywords: Moringa Seeds, Accra, , Ghana

Organization: Moringa Association of Ghana
Assistance Type: Technical Assistance
Specialties: Water Specialities:
Moringa Seeds

Address: Christian Council of Ghana Building, F148/2
Lokko Road, Osu
Accra, Ghana
Telephone #: (233) 302 92 3810
Email: info@moringagh.org
Website: http://www.moringagh.org/
Keywords: Moringa Seeds, Accra, , Ghana

Organization: Moringa Community
Assistance Type: Technical Assistance
Specialties: Water Specialities:
Moringa Seeds

Address: c/o Abubakar Abdulai
P.O. Box AD 821
Cape Coast, Ghana
Telephone #: (233) 244 724 194
Email: sadick1777@yahoo.com
Website: http://www.moringacommunity.org/
Keywords: Moringa Seeds, Cape Coast, , Ghana