The Swiss Water Process does not directly or indirectly add chemicals to extract caffeine. Rather, it relies entirely on two concepts – solubility and osmosis to decaffeinate coffee beans used by elements of local water, temperature and time to create some of the most intriguing decaf coffee. The Swiss Water Process uses Green Coffee Extract (GCE) for the caffeine extraction mechanism. Green Coffee Extract is a solution containing the water-soluble solids components of green coffee except the caffeine. The process relies on the stability of the soluble components of the GCE and the gradient pressure difference between the GCE (which is caffeine lean) and the green coffee (which is caffeine rich). This gradient pressure causes the caffeine molecules to migrate from the green coffee into the GCE. Because GCE is saturated with the other water-soluble components of green coffee only the caffeine molecule migrates to the GCE; the other water-soluble coffee elements are retained in the green coffee. This is what makes the GCE caffeine selective and specific. Once the GCE is rich with caffeine it is then percolated through carbon absorbers which attract the caffeine molecule from the GCE while leaving other green coffee elements intact in the GCE. When the GCE is once again lean of caffeine it is then used to remove additional caffeine from the green coffee. This is a continuous batch process that take 8–10 hours to meet the final residual decaffeinated target, which is 99.9% caffeine free.
PRODUCER OWNER N/A
FARM NAME Various
REGION Huila, Colombia
ALTITUDE ( masl ) 1600
PROCESS METHOD Washed (Swiss Water process decaffeination)