Food Science/caffeine


Is there a way to genetically alter coffee beans or chocolate coco so they contain no caffeine? Even decafe coffee contains some caffeine, but if someone  can't eat anything with it can foods be altered to not contain it at all.

Hi James,

Genetic Engineering is science that needs to be explored, but it is a relatively new science we are still learning about (only 30 years worth). Genetically "engineering" our food supply, even our coffee, is fraught with known and unknown and unknowable dangers.

Yes, we could genetically "engineer" coffee to be caffeine free (we have less caffeine-plants right now), but unfortunately we then risk harmful changes to the coffee produced from the new bean. We also risk spreading the modified crop contaminating other coffee plant seeds or other related species which may be able to cross breed the traits into their own genome.

The most effective way to produce reduced caffeine coffee plants is through genetic silencing. This has been done already, but regular coffee growers are resisting the planting of these modified plants, which will eventually contaminate other coffee plants through cross pollination.

Another problem with genetic silencing is the same as with genetic engineering... unknown and unknowable changes to other plant characteristics and functions and the lack of any regulation or safety testing here in the USA and Canada.

I hope this answers your questions and if you have any follow-up questions, please ask.

Thanks for the question,
Michael Polidori

Food Science

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Michael Polidori


I can answer questions about food safety issues and benefits vs risks issues related to the growing, environmental effects and health effects of conventional, organic and gene altered food (GE GMO genetically engineered), both plants and animals. I can answer questions related to the cause and treatment of nutritionally related disease (including immune related diseases) and nutritional problems related to healing physiological or nutritional injuries.


I have been studying food growing methods, regulatory rules and organic/conventional/biotechnological methods of producing foods since 1998. I have prepared materials for distribution concerning health safety issues, lack of regulation, environmental dangers and industry sponsored research of genetically engineered plants and animals. I have also created similar materials promoting the benefits of organic agriculture for not only direct health benefits but for dramatic reductions in pollution, indirectly benefitting our health. I have prepared research materials for and participated in Public Television talk and radio shows regarding the issues surrounding genetic engineering and organic foods and debated in college forums with mainstream scientific experts about the safety & regulatory issues of gene altered foods. 2000-2002 I managed booths at major North Carolina events interfacing with the public (including farmers) on organic vs GMO benefits and dangers. I understand regulatory practices, shortcomings & revolving jobs doors of the FDA, USDA and EPA and the industries they regulate. I have been involved in nutrition, health care, prescription drug, vaccine, disease, immune and wellness issues since 1997 reading and writing on the internet and in practical applications with myself, family and friends leading to paths of health, wellness and fitness.

North Carolina Citizens For Safe Food, Public Citizen, Organic Consumers Association, Union of Concerned Scientists, Environmental Working Group, PSRAST.

No Degree, but some college in the sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Calculus, Astronomy and Physics). I have also taken several courses in Logic and Philosophy. I am involved in extensive research using mainstream websites (many of which I am on mailing lists for) such as - peer-reviewed publications (The Lancet, New England Journal of Medicine, others), PubMed database of research studies, National Institutes of Health, FDA, USDA, EPA, University Research libraries, hospital databases (John Hopkins, Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, others). I also regulary contact/correspond-with manufacturers/suppliers of food products, pharmaceuticals (including vaccines) and supplements with questions, recommendations, criticisms and complements. Every week, I learn something new!

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