Health & hygiene

This work supports the following UN Sustainable Development Goals

  • Good Health and Wellbeing
  • Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Partnership For The Goals

Providing safe drinking water

We’re providing people with access to something that many of us take for granted – safe drinking water.

Lady using Pureit machine

A basic human right

Access to safe drinking water is a basic human right that people simply can’t live without.1 But three in ten people still don’t have access to this basic necessity.2 That means 844 million3 people are at risk of life-threatening waterborne illnesses. And worldwide, contaminated drinking water is responsible for more than half a million diarrhoeal deaths every year.4

Unsafe water also contributes to chronic problems like undernutrition and stunted growth. Stunting affects 159 million children under five and can have a long-lasting impact on physical and mental development. A lack of access to safe water is made worse by the rise in droughts and flooding that we’re seeing as a result of the climate crisis.

Through our innovative household water purifier brand, Pureit, we use best in class technology to purify and enrich water to help ensure people’s everyday health and well-being.

Pureit: A solution for safe drinking water

Pureit is our solution to help people get the safe, enriching drinking water they need. This directly contributes to UN Sustainable Development Goal 6: ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all. And it specifically responds to target 6.1, which focuses on access to safe and affordable drinking water for all.

Pureit uses our unique GermKill Kit™ to remove harmful viruses, bacteria, parasites and other impurities from water, in line with strict international standards. And it does this without the need for boiling the water. Pureit’s purified water is as safe as boiled water. Using one Pureit model, a litre of safe drinking water costs just 50 Indian paise (INR). And for the equivalent of just over one euro cent, someone can have 3.2 litres of drinking water. So using Pureit is simple, affordable and effective.

Pureit’s health and business impact

More than a decade after its launch, Pureit is still the world’s most advanced home water purification system. We now offer a range of water purification solutions across three technologies: gravity, UV (ultraviolet water purification, which disinfects bacteria from water) and RO (reverse osmosis, a water treatment process that removes contaminants by using pressure to force water molecules through a semi-permeable membrane, which filters out the contaminants). Our gravity model purifies water without the need for electricity, and we sell this in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

The most affordable model is less than €40 and all our models purify water to meet the stringent US Environmental Protection Agency’s criteria for microbiologically safe drinking water. In fact, research shows that Pureit reduces the occurrence of diarrhoea by up to 50%5 – even without other important factors like handwashing with soap.

Pureit is available in 12 countries, and is the most widely used system for home water purification. So far, we’ve protected over 80 million people from waterborne illnesses. Since 2005, we’ve provided 114 billion litres of safe drinking water through Pureit.

Adding the traditional goodness of copper to pure water

Copper is an essential mineral for human health. It has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties and also helps to neutralise toxins. In fact, Ayurveda medicine – one of the world’s oldest holistic healing systems – advocates drinking copper-infused water to enable the proper functioning of different organs and metabolic processes.

In 2019, we introduced our Pureit Copper+ RO model. This uses smart Copper Charge Technology™ to ensure just the right6 amount of copper in every glass of water. So, people can get the time tested benefits of copper in every drop.

Community water: turning vision into practice

Many people in India can’t afford to install and run a Pureit unit in their home. But at the community water plants, they can buy 20 litres of water for just 10-13 euro cents.

We’re looking at different models to serve communities with accessible and affordable clean drinking water where it’s most needed. For example, community water plants provide clean drinking water from a central point.

We began partnering with WaterHealth International (WHI), who are global experts in community water systems, in 2017. By setting up community water plants, we can reach families who can’t afford to have their own Pureit system at home. Together with WHI, we’ve set up four plants in the city of Tumkur and two in Ramdurg.

We also reach low income households through partnerships with micro finance institutions in several states, including Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Punjab.

Cutting the cost of safe drinking water for people & the planet

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80%

The carbon footprint of Pureit’s gravity model is at least 80% smaller than boiled or bottled water

The health of the environment and the people in it are inextricably linked. Pureit not only cuts the cost of safe drinking water, but also reduces the environmental impact. Our detailed lifecycle analysis shows that the greenhouse gas footprint of Pureit’s gravity model (measured in carbon dioxide equivalent emissions) is at least 80% smaller than boiled or bottled water per litre.

At the same time, we’re creating new innovative solutions to keep people safe from toxins or pollutants in their local environments.

It’s all in the WASH

Improving access to safe drinking water is just one part of our work around water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in impoverished communities worldwide. With at least 2 billion7 people drawing drinking water from a source contaminated with faeces, these topics are intertwined.

We’re partnering with others to create transformational (or systems) change, by running programmes and raising awareness of WASH issues. As well as extending access to safe drinking water, our WASH programmes and partnerships also aim to change handwashing habits and extend access to toilets.

1 United Nations General Assembly: Resolution 64/292, 2010.

2 UN Sustainable Development Goal 6: https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/water-and-sanitation/

3 World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs391/en/

4 World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs391/en/

5 According to an independent study by the National Institute of Epidemiology.

6 Consumption of two litres of copper charged RO water every day adds up to approximately 30% of the recommended daily allowance of copper for adults (Indian Council of Medical Research).

7 World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs391/en/

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