||The papaya (Carica papaya), of the family Caricaceae, is a tree-like tropical plant, native to Central
and South America. Papaya cultivation extends to all warm and humid countries. The present study
consists in using the solution of raw Carica papaya latex (SLCP) cultivated in Benin as a natural
biodegradable flocculant in a physico-chemical process to treat liquid discharges loaded with metals
including iron, copper, zinc, and manganese; and suspended matter, and also to test its efficiency
against other products commonly used in wastewater treatment. The tests were carried out on water
samples from the wastewater collector that runs through the Agla district in Cotonou.
The comparative study with a commonly used flocculant, aluminium sulphate, showed outstanding
competitiveness with a high flocculation power for the solution of Carica papaya raw latex. In six
water samples from the collector with average concentrations of iron, copper, zinc and manganese
of 18.20 mg/L ; 2.50mg/L ; 3.80 mg/L and 3.70 mg/L respectively, the percentages of metal removal
exceeded 90% for iron and manganese and around 85% for copper and zinc with the combination
FeCl3 + SLCP. The NaOH + SLCP combination showed a very significant effect on the removal of
metals (96% reduction) and suspended matter.