From Swiss Water Process:
Swiss Water believes that coffee drinkers deserve a choice in how their coffee is decaffeinated. The proprietary Swiss Water® Process gently removes caffeine using only water containing the soluble solids that naturally occur in green coffee—and never introduces chemical solvent residuals. The result is a high-quality process that preserves the unique origin flavors, taste, and characteristics of the coffee. Swiss Water maintains the sustainability of your supply chain, and is the only decaffeination company focused exclusively on a chemical-free process.
How does the Swiss Water® Process work?
Unroasted green coffee is cleaned, rehydrated, and then immersed in Swiss Water’s proprietary Green Coffee Extract (GCE) for the removal of caffeine. Created using only green coffee and water, GCE contains all the same water-soluble compounds found in green coffee, except for caffeine. Central to the process is the principle of diffusion: molecules naturally move from an area of high concentration to one of low concentration. Water-soluble compounds are held at equilibrium between the green coffee and the GCE—except the caffeine, which only exists in the coffee. Diffusion now takes place, with caffeine particles migrating out of the coffee beans and into the liquid GCE, but leaving everything else—like the coffee’s natural flavor characteristics—intact. After becoming saturated with caffeine, the GCE flows through proprietary carbon filters that trap only caffeine, so that the GCE may be used once again. Refreshed, caffeine-free GCE continues to flow until the coffee reaches its target of 99.9% caffeine free. Coffee then moves from processing to drying, where moisture in the coffee is converted to vapor, and removed through the air exhaust stream. The Swiss Water® Process is paired with advanced scientific systems and controls to identify relevant variables that adapt and adjust for different types of coffees. Where the process needs to be slow, it is slow. Where temperature needs to be adjusted, it is carefully adjusted. Swiss Water’s technicians use constant data feedback on process performance to optimize each step and the overall outcome.