Fruit juice is 100% pure juice made from the flesh of fresh fruit or from whole fruit, depending on the type used. It is not permitted to add sugars, sweeteners, preservatives, flavourings or colourings to fruit juice.
Fruit juices are usually described as:
- From concentrate
- Not from concentrate
- Freshly squeezed
Fruit juice from concentrate
Juice is extracted from the fruit and the water content is reduced (by evaporating off the water naturally present) in the country of origin. The concentrated juice is usually frozen and shipped to the country of use for packing. Fruit juice packers then reconstitute the juice by adding back the water.
Not from concentrate juice
Juice is extracted from the fruit in the country of origin and then lightly pasteurised and frozen, chilled or aseptically transported to the country where it will be packed.
Freshly squeezed juice
Juice is extracted from the fruit and used immediately
Juices have different shelf lives depending on the packing process used. Long life juices usually keep for 6-12 months while the packaging is kept sealed, and because of the pasteurisation process applied and packing method, do not require chilling. Short life juices have a shelf life of up to 30 days and must be kept chilled.
In the UK freshly squeezed fruit juices must have a shelf-life of no more than 14 days and undergo little or no pasteurisation treatment; they are usually packed and delivered to retailers within 24 hours.