Coffee Glossary

Decaffeinated coffee is coffee from which caffeine has been removed by different processes and which has been toasted before reaching the consumer. The most often used processes are:
– Using supercritical fluid CO2
Water
Natural Organic Extractant: Ethyl Acetate
– Chlorinated Organic Extractant: Methylene Chloride
Supercritical Fluids
Supercritical CO2 is used for the extraction of caffeine. The liquid (which is a high pressure gas is liquid) becomes repeatedly recirculated in the raw coffee beans under high pressure so as to gradually extract caffeine. Finally caffeine is separated, CO2 is recovered and the grain is dried.

Ethyl acetate or methylene chloride
In these two cases caffeine solvents are in contact with the raw beans, and the process is the same in both of them.
Green beans are treated with water in order to make them swell and thus make caffeine have mobility. Then coffee grains are treated with solvent and once extracted, the caffeine is recovered from the solvent by distillation techniques. Then the beans are treated with steam to deodorize and remove residual solvent.
By Water
Methods in which the organic solvents are not in direct contact with the grains are called WATER decaffeination.
In this process aqueous extract or water alone can be used.
In the first case the green beans are treated with a solution of coffee components in water which lacks caffeine. After the extraction, the caffeine-rich solution is treated with activated carbon or by liquid-liquid extraction with selective solvent in order to remove caffeine. This aqueous extract is reused in the decaffeination process.

In the second case, coffee can be extracted with water and then this extract must be decaffeinated by liquid-liquid extraction with an organic solvent for example methylene chloride, ethyl acetate etc. Then the caffeine-free solution is deodorized with steam. This caffeine-free extract is concentrated and incorporated into raw beans again which were previously dried to 20% of moisture content.

The coffee is not bad for the heart in healthy people if drunk in moderation, 3-4 cups a day. Above 5 cups can cause palpitations in some people.

Caffeine is a solid alkaloid crystalline, discovered in 1820 by F. Runge. It has toning properties for the human organism, activates the nervous system, sharpens perception, improves memory, reduces fatigue without altering the mental faculties or creating organic addiction.
However, if drunk excessively after midday, it makes it difficult for some people to fall asleep.
It is not advisable in coronary patients with gout and liver disease.
It is also not advisable for diabetics due to having an influence on insulin secretion.

Keeping coffee in form of beans and grinding it just before preparing it minimizes contact with air, and consequently the probability of degradation of aromas.