Behind the Beans
Information about DECAF & REGION from our Producers:
Swiss Water Decaffeination
This water decaffeinated coffee is the result of work carried out for several years in partnership with the Mexican company Descamex, which has a long experience of the decaffeination process because it was the first Latin American company to use this process in 1983.
Water decaffeination does not involve use of solvents, but rather a phenomenon called the osmosis principle; a coffee bean is composed of 74% non-soluble components, 25% soluble aromatic components and 1.2% caffeine, and the water decaffeination process has an action on these last two.
Step one: The coffee beans are placed in a steam bath, to open the beans’ pores and extract the soluble aromatic components and caffeine. The caffeine present in this water is filtered to retain only water packed with aroma precursors. These first lots of decaffeinated and “dearomatised” green coffee beans is sold at a very low price on coffee markets.
Step two: The water packed with aromatic components is used to extract the caffeine from the rest of the beans by osmosis. Osmosis is a principle whereby a highly concentrated solution is diffused through a semi-permeable membrane into a less concentrated solution until a point of equilibrium is reached. The green coffee beans are immersed in water baths containing the same aromatic components as those found in the coffee bean, with the exception of caffeine. Under certain temperature and pressure conditions, the principle of osmosis will allow the water bath to reach an equilibrium 50% of the caffeine passes through the water bath and 50% remains in the coffee bean. The process is repeated up to 10 times to reduce the caffeine content in the bean to a minimum, i.e. to between 0.01% and 0.02%.
The Chiapas region, located in southwest Mexico, was Guatemalan before 1824. Its highly contrasted landscape mixes coastal areas, valleys, mountains and tropical forests. It is one of the most important producing regions in Mexico. It benefits from exceptional bioclimatic conditions that have enabled it to develop a rich and diverse agriculture on almost 20% of its land. The main products farmed in Chiapas are coffee, bananas, cocoa, maize and mango, as well as honey, cane sugar and peppers. The region is particularly famous for its cocoa. Chiapas is also home to many indigenous peoples, including the Maya, Tzeltal, Tzotzil, Ch’ol and Tojolabal communities. Its coffee plantations are generally family-owned, and there are an increasing number of solidarity cooperatives. All in all, it is a region that boasts an extremely rich culinary, cultural and geographical diversity.
This region is also known for its production of potatoes, onions, wheat, cattle and milk. Nevertheless, we can observe a strong dependence of family income on coffee growing. Usually, Nariño coffees are well paid due to the high demand from international roasters and its high quality. The incomes are rather good for the families and many of them diversify their agricultural productions. The small size of their farms allows them to easily reduce production costs to get a good profit per harvest season.
VARIETY: Mixed Varieties
PROCESSING: Fully Washed, Decaf
FOB (per kg): TBA
PROJECT/ TRADER: Belco
ROASTER: Populus Coffee
ROAST PROFILE: Omniroast
TASTE NOTES: Round, sweet, notes of caramel