NFC Juice (‘Not From Concentrate’) is a form of selling juice that aims to use a minimal amount of processing, in order to preserve as much of the original character of the raw fruit as possible. As a result, the NFC juice producer will only remove the pulp, skin and seeds. On the other hand, a juice concentrate is where the water content from the fruit has been removed by the NFC manufacturers. Juice concentrate is generally frozen and is prepared for consumption by mixing with water. Since the concentrate can be frozen, it’s shelf-life is dramatically extended. Since the invention of frozen orange juice concentrate by Cedric Donald Atkins and his research team in the 1940’s, from-concentrate juices have remained the leading preference for juice in the US and most of the world.
In the 1990’s, a switch began to occur, and the sales of NFC juice began to overtake those of from-concentrate juices. This change can be attributed to changing consumer attitudes, and advances in preservation technology that allows NFC juices to last longer on the shelf, making them more competitive than they previously were. Increased advertising and promotion of NFC juices have also influenced the shift away from concentrated juice. Despite the slightly higher prices for NFC juice, consumers are happy to pay extra for a more premium quality product, that is the resultant of no water being extracted during the pasteurization process. Water is removed when juice concentrate is created, resulting in flavour loss, the introduction of sodium and the potentially alteration of the flavour of the juice, depending on the quality of the water, when the concentrate is turned back into juice. In the 1980’s, NFC only constituted about a fifth of the market but has since become the dominating form of juice purchased by consumers.
Gat Foods is an innovator in the juice industry, and is both a from-concentrate and NFC manufacturers. To find out more about their work, visit the Gat Foods website.