Juice is a drink made from the extraction or pressing of the natural liquid contained in fruit and vegetables. It can also refer to liquids that are flavored with concentrate or other biological food sources, such as meat or seafood, such as clam juice. Juice is commonly consumed as a beverage or used as an ingredient or flavoring in foods or other beverages, as for smoothies. Juice emerged as a popular beverage choice after the development of pasteurization methods enabled its preservation without using fermentation (which is used in wine production). The largest fruit juice consumers are New Zealand (nearly a cup, or 8 ounces, each day) and Colombia (more than three quarters of a cup each day). Fruit juice consumption on average increases with country income level.
Fruit juice being used in the preparation of a smoothie
The word “juice” comes from Old French in about 1300; it developed from the Old French words “jus, juis, jouis”, which mean “liquid obtained by boiling herbs”. The “Old French jus “juice, sap, liquid” (13c.)…[came] from Latin ius [which means] “broth, sauce, juice, soup,” from PIE root *yeue- “to blend, mix food” (cognates: Sanskrit yus- “broth,” Greek zyme “a leaven”, Old Church Slavonic jucha “broth, soup,” Russian: уха “ukha”, Lithuanian: juse “fish soup”).” The use of the word “juice” to mean “the watery part of fruits or vegetables” was first recorded in the early 14th century. Since the 19th century, the term “juice” has also been used in a figurative sense (e.g., to mean alcohol or electricity). Today, “au jus” refers to meat served along with its own juice, commonly as a gravy.
Pomegranates getting washed prior to processing in an Afghanistan fruit concentrate factory.
Juice is prepared by mechanically squeezing or macerating (sometimes referred to as cold pressed) fruit or vegetable flesh without the application of heat or solvents. For example, orange juice is the liquid extract of the fruit of the orange tree, and tomato juice is the liquid that results from pressing the fruit of the tomato plant. Juice may be prepared in the home from fresh fruit and vegetables using a variety of hand or electric juicers. Many commercial juices are filtered to remove fiber or pulp, but high-pulp fresh orange juice is a popular beverage. Additives are put in some juices, such as sugar and artificial flavours (in some fruit juice-based beverages); savoury seasonings (e.g., in Clamato or Caesar tomato juice drinks). Common methods for preservation and processing of fruit juices include canning, pasteurization, concentrating,freezing, evaporation and spray drying.
Although processing methods vary between juices, the general processing method of juices includes:
Washing and sorting food source
Straining, filtration and clarification
Filling, sealing and sterilization
Cooling, labeling and packing
After the fruits are picked and washed, the juice is extracted by one of two automated methods. In the first method, two metal cups with sharp metal tubes on the bottom cup come together, removing the peel and forcing the flesh of the fruit through the metal tube. The juice of the fruit, then escapes through small holes in the tube. The peels can then be used further, and are washed to remove oils, which are reclaimed later for usage. The second method requires the fruits to be cut in half before being subjected to reamers, which extract the juice.
After the juice is filtered, it may be concentrated in evaporators, which reduce the size of juice by a factor of 5, making it easier to transport and increasing its expiration date. Juices are concentrated by heating under a vacuum to remove water, and then cooling to around 13 degrees Celsius. About two thirds of the water in a juice is removed.The juice is then later reconstituted, in which the concentrate is mixed with water and other factors to return any lost flavor from the concentrating process. Juices can also be sold in a concentrated state, in which the consumer adds water to the concentrated juice as preparation.
Juices are then pasteurized and filled into containers, often while still hot. If the juice is poured into a container while hot, it is cooled as quickly as possible. Packages that cannot stand heat require sterile conditions for filling. Chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide can be used to sterilize containers. Plants can make anywhere from 1 to 20 tonnes a day.
A variety of packaged juices in a supermarket
High intensity pulsed electric fields are being used as an alternative to heat pasteurization in fruit juices. Heat treatments sometimes fail to make a quality, microbiological stable product. However, it was found that processing with high intensity pulsed electric fields (PEF) can be applied to fruit juices to provide a shelf-stable and safe product.In addition, it was found that pulsed electric fields provide a fresh-like and high nutrition value product.Pulsed electric field processing is a type of non thermal method for food preservation.