Coffee contains the perfect blend of 1000 chemicals. These chemicals together contribute towards delicious taste as well as aroma. Henceforth, removing the caffeine isn’t a simple task. Many people like the taste of coffee but do not like caffeine. Decaf Coffee is the removal of caffeine from coffee beans. This is perfect for people who prefer to have coffee without caffeine. For a coffee to be labeled decaffeinated, 97 percent of the caffeine needs to be removed. This is based on guidelines from the FDA.
Decaf coffee was first developed in Europe. It then made its way to the coffee cups of people in the United States, way back in the 1950s. The increasing percentage of sales of decaf coffee across the world and especially in the United States clearly show that Americans have serious interest in decaf coffee.
How The Caffeine Is Removed From The Coffee
Four main processes are used to decaffeinate the coffee. The first method was produced in 1903 by Ludwig Roselius. This is called the Roselius Process in which the coffee beans are steamed with a type of solution particularly, water and a chemical compound – benzene to withdraw the caffeine. While this was the first method used, it has been discontinued. This is because benzene has been found to cause cancer. There are other safe methods that are used today.
Carbon Dioxide Process
It is the most recent decaffeination method used. Liquid CO2 is used in place of chemicals to dissolve the caffeine from the coffee bean. The beans are put in a container known as the extraction vessel. The container is then sealed and the CO2 is forced into the beans.
This builds up a pressure of 1,000 pounds per square inch. The caffeine is drawn out of the beans and then is put into another container that is called the absorption container. The pressure is then reduced and the CO2 can turn back into its gas form. The caffeine is left behind in the container. The gas is then put into a special pressurized container and can be used for other purposes.
Swiss Water Process
This method was used in coffee-making process in 1988 in Vancouver, Canada. It does not use any chemicals and was developed in Switzerland. This method is used to remove caffeine from coffee beans that were grown organically. This method is unique because it does not directly or indirectly add chemicals in the process. Instead, solubility and osmosis are used to extract the caffeine.
The beans are soaked in hot water and then the water is passed through an activated charcoal filter. The filter is able to remove the larger caffeine molecules. In the end, in one tank you’re left with caffeine-free flavored changed water. And, in the another tank, you are left with the coffee beans that no longer have the caffeine. This is an environmentally friendly process of removing the caffeine from the coffee beans. Many say that this leaves the coffee with the most flavor and is the preferred method.
Direct Solvent Process
In this method, the coffee beans are steamed for 30 minutes. During this time, the pores of the beans opens up. The beans are rinsed over and over with ethyl acetate. It takes around 10 hours to remove the caffeine from the coffee bean. The solvent is then thrown out as it is no longer needed. The coffee beans are then ready to be used.
Decaf coffee allows a person to enjoy a good cup of coffee without caffeine. The way decaf coffee is processed, made, and produced is crucial in making decaf tastes delicious.