When comparing commercial juicer bars to what can be found at the grocery store, it quickly becomes obvious why fresh squeezed is always best. Most individuals like to pick up a carton of juice at the local grocery store and call it a day. They want something fresh, nutritious and quick with little cleanup, eliminating the desire for cold pressed juices. However what these people don’t know is that they are not gaining the nutrients and minerals that they believe they are.
Although several companies state that their product is one hundred percent natural and with no added sugars, they use preservatives to prepare their products to last on a store’s shelf for several months. If products freshly squeezed at a local commercial juicer bar or at home have a fresh juice shelf life of up to twenty-four hours after being prepared, how can bottled juices, such as Suja, be safe to drink for twenty or more days?
This is because of a technique called high pressure processing (hpp) that applies large amounts of pressure to a plastic bottle filled with juice to inactivate certain microorganisms and enzymes. This slows the spoilage of the juice by stopping any chemical activity caused by organisms and extends the shelf life up to forty-five days. High pressure processing has several advantages to both the producers and consumers such as the low level of pathogens in the juice, an increased shelf life, no heat added, and it is a FDA approved method of manufacturing for wholesale. Disadvantages include juice that is not freshly made, the deterioration of vital and good bacteria and altered formulas to withstand the intense pressure.
The shelf life of fresh juice depends on what kind of fruits and vegetables you juice. If made at home or by a commercial bar juicer, freshly squeezed orange juice is safe to drink for up to fourteen days and freshly squeezed vegetable and fruit juices are safe to drink for up to twenty-four hours if stored properly. Light and air are factors that play important roles in the nutrition and storage. Freshly squeezed juices should be stored in dark air tight containers and filled to the brim to decrease the amount of light and oxygen available to deteriorate the nutrients in the juice. Mason jars are commonly used because they are durable and do not allow any exchange of oxygen between the inside of the container and the environment. It must also be kept refrigerated to allow for maximum nutrients and low level of pathogens.
Most juice companies implement a method of extending the shelf life of their products and then must print on the labels that their product is pasteurized, flash pasteurized, one hundred percent juice, or juice from concentrate. Still, they are not raw, fresh, or contain near the amount of nutrients that a single glass of freshly cold pressed juice or high pressure processed juice contains. In summation, if you are looking for a nutritional, refreshing drink on the go then a high pressure processed bottle of juice will be sufficient. Although, if you looking for an even more vitamin and mineral packed refreshing beverage, then a freshly squeezed juice made at home or purchased from a juice bar is more fulfilling.