From the co-founder of Starbucks, Jerry Baldwin, a pro-science defense of decaf. Specifically, a defense of decaf coffee produced using (gasp!) chemicals. Balwin points out that our awareness of scary, long-named chemicals in some products isn't always due to altruistic popularization of careful science. Decaffeinating with dihydro-oxide (that's H2O, or water, for you English majors), isn't safer than a similar process with, say, methylene chloride. No matter what the scaremongering ad copy says:
Please suspend any chemo-phobia you may have while reading this. Don't let the technical words for chemicals put you off, and don't play into the hands of the irresponsible scare tactics of unscrupulous advertisers of Swiss Water-process decaffeination....
The old standby water decaffeination company, Swiss Water (the only attempt to brand a process), of Vancouver, Canada, is doing all the advertising while others are improving their process. We prefer the cup quality of other companies, and I deplore the marketing tactics of Swiss Water.
In the late '80s... I decried their deliberately misleading advertising. Here they go again. They are falling back into advertising tactics that assume the ignorance of the audience. Their attempt to associate the chemical names of the other processes with some chemo-hysteria is unethical.
Personally, I like the half-caf: Maximum chemical intake, plus the jitters. Better living through chemistry.
Via Jacob Grier