Whiling away time! or is it the burden of boredom for a bull? : Traditional Oil Press

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The video is of a chakku or the traditional oil press once-popular in Kerala. Moved by a pair of bulls these machines were used for extracting oil from seeds like coconut, sesame, ground nut and Indian laurel.

The Chakku is a simple machine with a large bowl-shaped structure and a pestle. The lower end of the rock-carved bowl would be fixed in the ground. The pestle is made of wood and this is fixed to a log to which the bulls are tied. As the animals walk around the Chakku the pestle rotates and the seeds are crushed. Oil comes out of a hole on the side of the bowl and is collected in vessels.

With the advent of modern machines the use of Chakkus declined. However, even today one can find them in the remote villages of the state.

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