Quality with Human Touch
They say, quality is in paying attention to details. In our own context of making Siddha and Ayurvedic medicines, quality is in paying attention to dusts, and removing them, using our own hands, wherever machines can’t be trusted. We call this ‘Quality with Human Touch’.
Machines are useful only to remove ‘external dusts’. Over 80% of our raw materials are harvested from the wild, and naturally, they come with all sorts of visible dusts such as sand particles and human hair, and invisible damages such as contamination. Machines can remove these external dusts. This is just the cleaning process.
When it comes to purification
However, the texts of ancient medicines emphasize on the purification of raw materials, and this mostly needs manual intervention. For instance, Siddha talks about: ‘outer poison’ (pura nanju) and ‘inner poison’ (aha nanju). If you take the case of Piper Nigrum (Pepper in English and mizhagu in Tamil), as an example, its outer skin has to be removed to enhance its medicinal value. The outer skin could also bring down the efficacy of medicines such as Trikatu Churna that is made of it. Hence, Siddha regards pepper’s outer skin as ‘pura nanju’ – outer poison.
An example of ‘aha nanju’ is a root cap (that looks like a rice) of Terminalia Bellirica nut (kadukkai in Tamil), one of the three ingredients of Triphala churna. According to the traditional texts, the pulp in the nut has to be removed, for the same reasons why we have to remove the outer skin of pepper.
Many herbal raw materials have such poison-like integral parts, and they can be removed only manually. We nullify the effects of pepper’s skin by roasting pepper before using it to make medicines.
In the case of kadukkai, we break the nut into smaller parts; get rid of smaller sand particles or other foreign materials, all using machines. But the unnecessary pulp is removed by the hands of our experienced staff.
It is hugely time consuming – because each and every nut has to be inspected and the pulp removed. But we have all the time in the world, when it comes to quality. Our production and sales can wait, while we pick every kadukkai nut, break it, remove dusts, and pick and throw pulp with a pinch. End of the day, we stand only for quality.