The Trader Joe's Powder is part of the dishwasher detergent
test program at Consumer Reports. In our lab tests, dishwasher detergent
models like the Powder are rated on multiple criteria, such as those listed below.
Liquids and powders generally pour easily; gels have a thicker consistency than liquids. Tablets are a dry, solid premeasured amount of detergent. Pacs have a dissolvable outer package containing a premeasured amount of liquid, gel, or powder. A dispenser product uses a cartridge that automatically dispenses a charge of detergent for 12 loads of dishes.
Size of package:
The package size in ounces for liquids or powders or count for tablets, tabs and packs.
Gauges how well a detergent removed a caked-on puree of foods from glass dishes.
Features & Specs - Trader Joe's Powder
Contains bleach Based on the package ingredients list and other package claims, some detergents include bleach in their formulas. While the presence of bleach has not seemed to act on the baked-on soils in our tests, it might help with tea or similar stains.
Contains enzymes Based on the package ingredients list and other package claims, most tested detergents have enzymes, which can break up food for easier removal.
I'm using the product on and off for the last couple of month, because I'm very concerned with all the toxins in the regular dishwasher detergents. At the beginning, I was ok with it, but it always had the problem that the powder did not dissolve properly, which was mostly visible of the glass ware. Initially I thought it would be my mistake, because I used too much or had wrong water temperature. I even had a technicial check out my water heater (I have a tankless one), but he said that shouldn't be a problem; most modern dishwashers adjust the water temperature on their own, so you could in principle even hook it up to the cold water (which would be much less enery efficient of course). I switched to other brands (there is one from Whole Foods, a liquid one) and the problem diappeared.