Local Dishwashing Powder



November, 25, 2020
Uttarakhand & Rajasthan

In Rajasthan, using cow dung ash as dish washing powder has been a long standing tradition. Due to water scarcity in that climate, cow dung ash is the main dishwashing product and is also considered to be a disinfectant. “We’ve been using this powder for ages, and now we have added dried lemon peel powder,” says Rajesh of Harirampura.

“We followed this tradition before, but now people are used to buying dishwashing powder from the market. Adopting this old tradition will make our life more in tune with nature,” says Subhadra, our staff person in Dunda village.

First, the home made product is free of cost, for all of the ingredients are within reach. Moreover, its usefulness has been proven over time.

A video made and sent by Subhadra to Amrita staff explains the convenient, homemade recipe consisting of two natural ingredients found in every village: dried cow dung ash and dried lemon peels. The most important element of the recipe, cow dung, has to be pure. The cow’s food chain must be well known. She must eat pure food grown without harmful chemical pesticides and fertilisers. Only then is dung considered pure and safe to use.

“Today we are making Gomay dishwashing powder using cow dung fuel (Rakh) and lemon rinds.”

“We are drying the cow dung cakes under the sun.”  These cakes are widely used in northern India as fuel for cooking in the chulha, the home oven. The ash is gathered for the recipe.

“The lemon peels are cut into small pieces before being dried in the sun and finally ground into a fine powder.”

“Then we mix the cow dung fuel powder and lemon powder together. The combined powder is now ready to be packed into a container. Our dishwashing powder is ready and can be used as required for washing the vessels.”

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