Perhaps you are familiar with the PUR line of pitcher filters, refrigerator filters and faucet water filters. Here in the U.S. we are fortunate enough to have had access to clean water for quite some time, along with the tools to filter out chemicals, such as chlorine, which make it that way. But those in the developing world have only recently been introduced to the technology that makes our water clean. It is part of the PUR line of products and it comes in the form of a powder, contained in a small four-ounce packet.
Each packet of powdered mixture is able to clean up to 10 liters of dirty water, removing 99.9 percent of intestinal bacteria, intestinal viruses and protozoa. The PUR packet has been proven to reduce diarrheal disease incidence – one of the leading causes of death in the developing world – by up to 90 percent.
The PUR packet was developed by Proctor & Gamble (P&G) in collaboration with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Dr. Allgood of P&G started the Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program after a touching visit with a woman in Kenya seven years ago, turning the distribution of the PUR packet into a nonprofit effort. To date, they have been able to produce more than one billion liters of clean water for children and families in over 40 developing countries. The packets are smaller and easier to ship than plastic water bottles, for faster distribution.
The packet is easy to use: Simply pour its powdered contents into ten liters of water and stir for five minutes. Wait five more minutes for the large dirt particles to settle, and pour the water over a clean cloth into another container. The cloth will filter out large particles of dirt, leaving you with crystal clear water. Wait another 20 minutes before drinking to ensure that all of the microorganisms are killed.View Dr. Allgood’s demonstration of this, here.