in LEARN | 12 May 2016

Read the labels


Juicing is becoming more and more popular in The Netherlands. Finally! It is the easiest way to consume large quantities of fruit and vegetable in an easy, hassle free way but just because some bottles say "raw", "fresh" and "cold pressed" and sometimes even "organic" on the label, it doesn't mean that it really is what the label says. That is why we want to educate you on the importance of reading the fine prints and the back of labels of all kinds of foods and understanding what they mean.


Lots of products on the market today claim to be raw, fresh, organic, and / or cold pressed and because juicing is relatively new to the Netherlands, we do not have regulations in place yet to stop companies from making misleading claims about their product and duping customers into buying and consuming juice that is not quite what the front label says and could possibly not give you the benefits you are hoping for.


In the U.S.A, the FDA (The US Food and Drug Association) put regulations in place regarding the words companies can use to describe their product so that they do not fool and confuse the consumer. One of these words is “raw”.  Think logically about this; If you put a bag of fresh spinach in the fridge, it usually goes off after a few days - even shorter if your spinach is organic. If the produce used in juices are raw and fresh, the juice should go off in a couple of days too, no? But yet we see more and more so called "fresh" juices with a two to three week shelf-life, some even up to 45 days! This is alarming because these juices are still being marketed as "raw" and "fresh". 


The reason why these juices have an extended shelf-life is because they are being cold pasteurized by using a process called HPP, High Pressurised Processing. High Pressurised Processing, also called Pascalisation, is a method that has been around since the 1990's by which food is put under immense amounts of water-based pressure that change and neutralise the structure of mould and yeast forming bacteria, to give the product a longer shelf life. Ofcourse this doesn't sound too bad and note that HPP is a great improvement to heat pasteurisation but realise that live enzymes, one of the most beneficial reasons for drinking juice, only stay alive for a few days.


For brands in the U.S.A. that use the method called HPP, they are not allowed to describe their product as "cold pressed" juice on the label or anywhere else in their on and offline communications. Their products will read: "cold pressUREISED" or " cold pressURED".  In The Netherlands these regulations have also not been implemented just yet so we suggest reading the fine prints or just look at the expiration date. Does any "fresh" or "raw" product last longer then 2 or 3 days? Something has been done to it. It is not as fresh, raw or only cold pressed like the product may lead you to believe. 


Companies that apply the HPP method think and often state that because they don’t use heat (Pasteurisation) to extend the product it's shelf life that all of the vitamins, nutrients, and enzymes are in tact but that is not entirely true as live enzymes only stay alive for a maximum of 5 to 7 days. In addition to neutralising the bacteria that causes the juice to spoil, HPP kills the microorganisms and allows for the neutralisation of live enzymes that are responsible for breaking down food and helping it be absorbed by our bodies and probiotics which help prevent harmful bacteria from growing. 


In addition to checking the expiration date of your juice to know if its not been treated also check if your juice is 100% certified organic. Here in the Netherlands, you can determine this by seeing whether or not the product or the store has the Skal organic certification logo. This is very important especially when it comes to cold pressed juices because non-organic fruit and vegetables contain numerous pesticides, insecticides, and other chemicals. When you press non-organic produce, in addition to juice, you will also be taking in a highly concentrated form of these chemicals straight into your blood stream.


To be certain that that what you are consuming is raw, organic, and fresh, cold pressed juice check: 

1. The expiration date. This should be no longer than 2 to 3 days.

2. Certification. The store, website or the product should have an indication of it being 100% Skal certified organic.


Does the product you have in your hand check both boxes?

Then enjoy your fresh, raw, organic, cold pressed juice that is full of vitamins, minerals, live enzymes and health! Drink up and feel your best!

For more nutritional advice pop into one of our Juiceries and our Juice Specialists will be more then happy to help you.