BRITA on meeting the water filtration needs of any Australian café

café water filtration

There’s more to water than meets the eye, and the Purity C range from BRITA Professional is designed to meet the filtration needs of any Australian café.

The last thing any café wants is a machine breakdown or bad tasting coffee, and filtering water before it enters the espresso machine is a simple way to stop that from happening.

However, not all water is the same, and Richard Padron, Sales Director at BRITA Professional ANZ, says a unique solution is required for different situations.

“A café’s needs out of a filter, changes from state to state, suburb to suburb, and in some cases, even street to street,” says Richard.

“BRITA Professional offers flexibility in our water filter range to accommodate for different water supplies and conditions.”

After looking at the different water conditions around the country, BRITA determined its Purity C series could meet the needs of any Australian café. Purity C consists of three primary ranges, the Purity C Quell, Purity C Finest, and Purity C Fresh, available in a range of sizes. Each filter uses a particular filtration method to remove particles like rust or scale and activated carbon to reduce chlorine compounds and organic impurities.

The Quell and Finest models use additional ion exchangers that tailor them to suit and demineralise different water conditions.

“Purity C Fresh is a filter designed for use with soft water conditions. Melbourne, generally, is a great example of where you’d likely use the Purity C Fresh. It has a really nice soft water, which doesn’t need too much filtering, but still requires a safety net to catch things like organic compounds and chlorine,” Richard says.

“It only slightly plays with the chemical structure of the water so when it goes through the boiler of the coffee machine, and then interacts with the coffee bean, it gives you the nice, pleasant aroma you’re looking for and the desired taste profile.”

The Purity C Quell is a decarbonisation filter, designed for areas with a carbonate hardness higher than permanent hardness, meaning there is a calcium exchanges with hydrogen, the by-product resulting in softer water.

If this type of water is left unfiltered, the carbon will build up as scale in the boiler of the coffee machine, eventually leading to a breakdown, Richard says.

“With that filter, the aim is to remove all the stuff that can cause damage to the machinery but leave a small amount of calcium and magnesium in because that’s really important when it comes to taste and flavour transfer. It’s about balancing the water out to make sure the water is soft, and pH balanced to give you a good result in the cup,” he says.

The Purity C Finest sits at the opposite end to the Quell, ideal for filtering water with a higher permanent hardness than carbonate hardness. Like water with high carbonate hardness, this can cause build-ups in a coffee machine. Unlike carbonate hard water, which can give coffee a flat taste, the compounds in permanent hard water tend to bring out undesirable bitter notes.

“A hard water condition produces a very different output from what you’d usually want for a hot drinking supply, and an exchange with sodium is required from a chemical structural point of view,” Richard says.

“The sodium exchange also works better with a stainless-steel boiler and creates a ‘protective layer’ around the boiler, while allowing us to balance that water profile for the best output for the in-cup solution that you need from a coffee machine.”

When it comes to installing a water filter at a café, BRITA has provided extensive training to its dealer network, so they can carry out onsite testing of the water to make the best call.

“With every test we do, BRITA keeps a record in our own water map, giving us the insight to make recommendations virtually on the spot,” Richard says.

“The kind of machine matters too. Copper and stainless-steel boilers have different filtration needs, so training our dealers is crucial to making sure the right filter is used. Globally, BRITA works with many machine manufacturers while they’re designing new equipment, supplying them with a gamut of filters, so they can make sure their equipment is ready for the market.”

While the Purity C range is well equipped to cover the needs of the Australian coffee market, Richard says BRITA Professional is keeping its eye on upcoming trends and will soon provide cafés with even greater control of their mineralisation.

“Soon, BRITA will be introducing a reverse osmosis system that takes us to the next level of filtration,” he says.

“The ProGuard RO will strip nearly everything out of the water supply, turning it into usable water, then reinfuses the exact amount of calcium the barista wants for the ultimate taste transfer.”

As the general consumer’s knowledge of coffee grows, Richard says so does their expectations of the end experience, and cafés need to use the right equipment, like filtration, to deliver.

“Australia is a country that is in love with its hot solution, from coffee to tea and other hot beverage drinks,” Richard says.

“We know the nation’s café industry is going to keep growing, and it’s our job to bring the awareness of the importance of water filtration to the forefront.” 

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This article appears in the August 2021 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.

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