Biotreat Microbe solution for Pit Toilets in rural areas in South Africa

Biotreat Microbe solution for Pit Toilets in rural areas in South Africa and removes solid human waste from pit latrines. This is great for rural areas and schools. Biotreat makes pit toilets safer and removes the bad smell from the toilets.


 In Africa and other developing nations, a large percentage of the population do not have access to flushing toilets. Full and overflowing household and school pit latrines have far-reaching implications. The absence of hygienic toilets is a cause major communicable diseases which in turn pose a threat to public health.

In addition to the threat of disease caused by full and overflowing pit latrines, the problem of smell, flies and cockroaches are a source of unhappiness and often despair, for households and schools alike.

Educate a woman, you educate a nation – why girls who reach puberty stay away from school.

Often toilets are unusable because they are full and overflowing. All children who are faced with these conditions face increased health risks, including diarrhea, worms and urinary infections that not only impact on their ability to learn but leads to an increased absenteeism, but girls face additional challenges. Girls who have reached puberty are less likely to attend school regularly if toilets and hygiene are inadequate and non-existent

Lack of adequate sanitation facilities in school is the prime cause of distress in the lives of those young girls. They ultimately leave school and are unlikely to return.

Another problem with pit latrines is increased insect breeding that endangers the health of users. In pit toilets and septic tanks, human excreta is a natural attractant to flies and mosquitoes which serve as transmitters of diarrheal diseases and malaria.

BioTreat™ provides a solution to this problem. BioTreat™ eliminates smells and removes the environment that flies and mosquitoes thrive in.

BioTreat™ eliminates flies and mosquitoes that attract frogs and snakes.

In summary, BlueStream’s BioTreat™ is a cost-effective and speedy solution to the household and school sanitation problem of overflowing toilets, smells, flies, cockroaches, frogs, snakes and school attendance.


Currently the preferred method of assistance that communities receive for the alleviation of the problems associated with pit latrines is the provision of honey-suckers. This method is inefficient and expensive.

The challenges and problems associated honey-suckers include the following:

  • The cost of cleaning out each toilet is prohibitive.
  • The vehicles used are often unable to reach outlying areas due to the state of the roads.
  • If they are able to get to the designated area, the positioning of the individual household’s toilet is often inaccessible.
  • The honey-sucker trucks are expensive and there are not enough of them to service all the communities. Only a few toilets can be treated per day.
  • They can only empty a certain number of toilets a day due to traveling time and the tanks becoming full.

The distances associated with traveling to municipal treatment areas are often impractical. This leads to unconfirmed, but widely reported practices of honey-suckers dumping the waste in nearby rivers or unoccupied land. This practice is dangerous to both humans and animals, particularly when it rains. Rivers are then further contaminated leading to additional challenges for affected communities.


Bio Treat™ Solution for pit toilets is a product manufactured in South Africa by Bluestream Environmental Sales and Technology (Pty) Ltd – a Company proudly incorporated in South Africa and 100% owned by South Africans.

It is a stable, non-pathogenic, liquid/powder of spores and vegetative micro-organisms capable of digesting complex proteins, human-solid-waste, starches, fats, cellulose and vegetable gums.

BioTreat™ is a non-disease forming, non-toxic, microbe rich  powder or liquid that rapidly digests human solid waste in pit latrines and other applications. It is cost-effective in eliminating the problems associated with pit latrines, including overflowing, foul odors, flies and cockroaches.

BioTreat™ contains strains of bacteria which degrade tissue-paper, human solid-waste, fats, oils and grease at an accelerated rate and is commonly used in municipal waste-water treatment works, oxidation ponds, bio filters, lagoons, septic tanks and pit-latrines.


 BioTreat™ is proposed as a solution to the above problems. BioTreat™ by contrast is:

  • Very cost effective, probably the world’s most cost-effective sanitation solution
  • Can be delivered anywhere.
  • Is applied by hand, so any toilet can be reached.
  • Thousands of toilets can be treated every day.
  • There is no transporting of the waste, it is eliminated on site.

BioTreat™ works by activating natural microbes, which produce enzymes that enable the microbes to digest human faeces, reducing the pile of solids by converting solid matter into water.


 It was agreed that the pilot would be conducted in 60 houses.

On the day we tested 64 houses which were identified in consultation with the Ward Councilor, Mr. Jamjam. The measurements, testing and recording were all witnessed by Mr.Jamjam, Mr. Siya Lolwana, Ms Ayanda Xaba and Mr Thabo Makweba, who were all gracious enough to spend the entire time with us, witnessing our testing procedures and the recording of the results.

Of the 64 toilets, we tested and treated 55 toilets and only tested (but didn’t treat) a further 9. These 9 were our control toilets, to evaluate what would have happened if we hadn’t treated them at all.

We tested all 64 houses, using a 2 meter, per-calibrated measuring stick. The people doing the testing were supplied with safety boots, masks, goggles, gloves and jackets.

We measured and recorded information from each house including:

  • The date
  • The level of waste in each toilet
  • The home owner’s name.
  • The number of occupants in each home


Part of the testing Team outside Sakhisizwe Municipal Offices, including Ms Ayanda Xaba (Water Quality Technician); Mr Siya Lozwana (Civil Technician)



The 9 toilets that we tested with Biotreat Solution for pit toilets had an average occupation of 7.1 residents per home. The levels of human solid waste in these toilets increased over the 32 day period by an average of 92%.

Average level on 18 July was 40cm, this increased by 91.6% over 32 days to an average of 76.6cm.

Total levels increased from 360cm to 690cm over this period. Up 92%



The levels of fecal matter in the 55 toilets that we treated, decreased by an average of 49%. This despite them being used every day. The average number of occupants in these homes was 6.1 people

Each owner was interviewed after the 32 day trial period and every one expressed their satisfaction with the results. They were all very pleased with the reduction in smell and flies. The trial results are even more impressive as the project was conducted in the coldest month of the year, when our microbes are at their least efficient.

Average level on 18 July was 86cm, this decreased by 49% to 44cm over 32 days.

Total levels decreased from 4,73 metres to 2,45 metres. Down 49%

removepoofrom pit toilets

Resident’s comments:

We interviewed at least one resident/owner from each dwelling tested. We recorded the interviews, which were overwhelmingly positive. Here is a selection of comments:

1       Nofikile Tshungu (4 occupants)
There was a very bad smell before the treatment of the toilet, the toilet was full since the treatment, no more smell and I can see the toilet is going down and I would be very happy if you can continue treating the toilet.

2       Nobanda Nonkululeko (8 occupants)
is not full like before, no more smell, I am very happy.

3       Sandi Mbitha (6 occupants)
Before there was a bad smell but now there is a huge difference, no smell and the toilet has gone down.

4       Mzwamadoda Tikana (7 occupants)
There was flies and bad smell before, but now no smell and flies and the toilet has gone down, I will be very happy for your service again.


We believe that we have successfully demonstrated a viable solution to the sanitation challenges that face our communities on a daily basis. We are able to offer a better life for all at a competitive price, a marked improvement in living conditions – a solution that restores dignity to the community

We thank you for the time taken in the consideration of this document, and in particular, those associated with the successful implementation of the pilot project at Cala.