Natural juices are made from fruits (most often) and vegetables by mechanical action and canning by physical means. Fruit juices are obtained from benign fresh or kept fresh by cooling, ripe or even dried fruits. Such juice is non-fermented, but fermentable and intended for direct consumption. Fruit juices can be made from one type of fruit or from mixtures of juices of different types of fruits.
There are a large number of classifications of various types of these products. But most often, the classification of fruit juices is used in accordance with the Technical Regulations for fruit and vegetable juice products, which entered into force on April 28, 2009. According to the regulations there are:
- direct-squeezed fruit juices (which are obtained directly from fresh or freshly stored fruits by mechanical processing);
- freshly squeezed fruit juices (direct-squeezed juices, which are made from fresh or freshly stored fruits in the presence of the consumer and are not canned);
- concentrated fruit juices (produced by physically removing direct squeezed water from the juice to increase the soluble solids content at least twice);
- reconstructed fruit juices (made from concentrated juice or concentrated juice and direct-squeezed juice and drinking water);
- diffusion fruit juices (made by extracting extractives from fresh or dried fruits using drinking water, juice from which cannot be obtained by mechanical processing). This kind of fruit juice can be concentrated first and then restored.
Natural juices are also divided into clarified and unclarified. The most expensive and high-quality brand juices are considered, which are made from specially selected varieties of raw materials. Natural clarified juices, although slightly inferior in nutrition to juices with pulp, have a higher content of vitamin C (unlike unclarified juices, they are not diluted with sugar syrup).
The technological process for the production of natural fruit and vegetable juices consists of several basic operations: inspection of raw materials, washing, secondary inspection and washing, crushing, obtaining juice, straining, clarification. At the first inspection, too large or small fruits and berries are removed from the raw materials, as well as impurities - twigs, leaves, stalks, etc. The raw materials are inspected and sorted directly on the conveyor belt. After the inspection, all selected fruits, berries and vegetables are sent for washing in a drum or fan washer. Berries (for example, currants, raspberries, strawberries, etc.) are thoroughly washed from sand and earth. Since berries, in comparison with fruits and vegetables, require more careful handling, they are washed with the help of mesh baskets, which are lowered together with the contents into water, and then rinsed under the shower. It is impossible to remove all foreign matter from the first try, so the raw materials are sent for re-inspection and washing.
To obtain juice from raw materials, it is pre-crushed, as a result of which at least 75% of the pulp cells are destroyed. Some fruits and berries after crushing or pressing produce juice much worse, therefore, such raw materials of such varieties are sent for additional processing. If enzymes are used for this, then the crushed mass is preheated to a temperature of 45 ° C and an extract of the enzyme preparation is added to it in an amount of 2-3%. The resulting mixture is stirred, left for 6-8 hours, and then pressed. Under the influence of enzymes, the protoplasm of a significant part of the cells is destroyed, due to which the plant tissue acquires a loose structure, and the yield of juice during pressing increases significantly. In addition to enzymes, electric current is also used to process raw materials. For this, an electroplasmolyzer is used, through which raw materials are passed in crushed (pome fruits and stone fruits) or in general (for example, grapes and other berries). The yield of juice in apples and grapes as a result of such processing rises to 80-82%, respectively, and in plums - up to 65%.
As a result of the next operation - pressing - get the actual juice. The production of juice depends on the model of the press and the pressure regime. Experts advise using hydraulic puck presses. The squeezed raw materials obtained after pressing are loosened and sent back to the press. In the manufacture of sweetened juices, squeezes obtained from raw materials are additionally mixed with cold water in a ratio of one to one, mixed thoroughly and again sent under pressure. The resulting juice (it has a much lower concentration) becomes the basis for the preparation of sugar syrup. Then the syrup is mixed with high-quality juice of the first extraction. Since the juice obtained under the press has impurities (pieces of branches, peels, seeds, pulps, etc.), the next step is to carefully filter it through stainless steel sieves with 0.75 mm openings.
The most difficult operation from the point of view of the technologies used is the clarification of juice. There are several basic methods that are used in production. For example, the juice is clarified by heating to a temperature of 80-90 ° C for 2-3 minutes. As a result of this, coagulation of colloidal substances occurs. After which the juice is subjected to rapid cooling to 35-40 ° C and the separation of suspended particles by filtration or centrifugation in centrifugal separators (centrifuges).
In addition to the above methods, clarification with enzyme preparations is used. Enzyme preparations, which are added to the pulp to increase the yield of juice during the pressing process, can also be used to clarify the juice. This method is suitable for processing juices from fruits that contain a large amount of pectin substances (for example, apples). For one ton of unclarified juice, which is preheated to 40-45 ° C, which is the optimum temperature for the action of the enzyme, 2-4 kg of enzyme powder is added. After which the juice is aged for 3-6 hours. During this time, large particles of turbidity are formed, which then precipitate. Juice is drained from the sediment (decanted) and filtered.
Also, the juice can be clarified with activated clay (usually bentonites are used for these purposes). Bentonite is the name of certain types of clay that are found in Georgia, Moldova, Odessa Oblast and other countries and regions. Using this technology, bentonite juice is processed simultaneously with filtration. In this case, first a layer of finely ground bentonite clay is applied to the fabric of the filtering surfaces. To do this, the clay is pre-mixed with juice and passed through a filter. Juice seeps through the fabric, which is covered with filter plates, and a layer of clay remains on it and is used to lighten the following batches of juice. Bentonites neutralize the electric charges of juice colloids and cause them to precipitate.
There are other methods that are used to clarify juices: for example, using activated carbon, centrifugation, blending with various tannins, etc. Some clarification naturally occurs during long-term storage of unclarified juices. The clarified juices (including self-clarified ones) are filtered on installations of any type, precoated filters or filter presses.
After pressing, filtering, clarifying and filtering the juice is sent to the workpiece. For example, when preparing a juice-prefabricated product in glass bottles, the container is first washed and scalded with boiling water. After filling the juice, heated to 95 ° C, the bottles are sealed with sterilized caps. Then the bottles from the juices are cooled at room temperature and sent to the warehouse, where they are stored for 2-3 months. As a result of such long-term storage, the juice self-clarifies, after which it is decanted, heated, poured into a smaller package and pasteurized.
Juices with the addition of sugar syrup are produced from fruits and berries with high acidity or from raw materials with low sugar content (usually unripe). And juices with sugar in their pure form are produced clarified and unclarified. Sugar syrup and sugar are usually not added to natural juices, except for those that have high acidity (for example, juices from cranberries, cherries, plums, black currants). The ratio of sugars used (sucrose, fructose, glucose) depends on the total acidity of the starting product. The required sugar content in a particular juice is determined in the laboratory after taking samples and calculating the optimal ratio of components.
There are certain nuances in the production of various types of juices, depending on the raw materials used. So, for example, fruit juices can be clarified (transparent), unclarified (cloudy) and with pulp content. They are obtained from quality ripe, fresh and fresh fruit preserved. Citrus juices are multivitamin drinks, as they contain large amounts of vitamin C and carotenoids. They are produced unlit (natural and with sugar) and with pulp. When squeezing the juice from the pulp, they try to keep the skin of citrus fruits as intact as possible, since subsequently valuable essential oil is extracted from it.
Blended (mixed) juices are produced by adding up to 35% juice of other types of berries and fruits to the juice-based. Moreover, sometimes the raw material is mixed before pressing. Blending can significantly improve the organoleptic properties of the product, its nutritional and biological value.
Concentrated juices are made from non-fermented juices, and from which organic moisture is partially partially removed by evaporation or freezing with reverse osmosis with the capture of aromatic substances and returning them back to the product. Concentration by evaporation is carried out in special evaporators. Moreover, the quality of the juice is directly affected by the evaporation temperature and the duration of this procedure. Therefore, experts advise using vacuum devices for the production of concentrate. For concentration by freezing, the juice is cooled below freezing. Part of the water freezes and is separated from the concentrate by separation. The lower the freezing point, the better. Concentrated juice is also obtained using membranes by the reverse osmosis method. In this case, on both sides of the membrane there are reservoirs with liquid with different concentrations of dissolved substances. At the boundary of the membrane, osmotic pressure occurs. Under its influence, water moves from a solution with a low concentration to a solution with a high concentration until the concentrations are equal.
Juices that are intended for baby food are made from high quality fruit and berry raw materials. They are natural, with the addition of pulp, sugar, blended (mixed). Diet juices are made from fruits and berries that are low in sucrose. Sorbitol and xylitol are used as a sweetener. To obtain fruit nectars, fruit juice is mixed with one or more types of concentrated juices with the addition of water, sugar, sometimes citric or ascorbic acid (but only to adjust the taste). Juice drinks are prepared by mixing fruit juice or concentrate with water. Also, various natural volatile aromatic components of fruit sugar, artificial flavors, sweeteners, stabilizers, sweeteners, natural opacifiers are added to such a drink. Juice drinks can also be saturated with carbon dioxide.
Vegetable juices come from one or more types of vegetables, clarified or unclarified, puree without large particles (seeds, peels, etc.). They add salt, sugar, vinegar, seasonings, herbs, natural flavors, etc. In the production of vegetable juices, like fruit, there are certain nuances. For example, in the manufacture of tomato juice, crushed tomato mass is preheated to remove air that remains in it during crushing. Carrots for the preparation of carrot juice are peeled on abrasive machines, and then they are further cleaned by hand, cut, steamed with hot steam for 10-20 minutes, chopped and rubbed through a sieve. The resulting homogeneous mass is mixed with sugar syrup and processed on a homogenizer.
The optimal legal form for starting a business for the production of reconstituted juices (especially if you plan to attract investors) is a limited liability company. When registering, select the code 15.32 “Production of fruit and vegetable juices” as the main code of activity for OKVED. To organize an enterprise for the production of natural juices from concentrates, you will need areas for a production room, domestic premises and a warehouse, a conveyor line, raw materials and packaging for finished products. There are no unified requirements for the area of leased premises. The main thing is that at least one juice production line fits in the workshop. This will require a workshop with an area of about 150 square meters. meters. In addition, it must comply with the requirements of the Fire Regulations of April 25, 2012. Like other industries, such a plant is recommended to be located outside the city. This will save on rental costs and utility costs (especially water, which will require a considerable amount).
The total cost of equipment for the production of juices is from 1.7 to 7 million rubles. Used lines are sold for 2-3 million rubles, depending on the manufacturer and condition. If you want to save on equipment, then before buying, be sure to consult a specialist, otherwise there is a high risk of spending more money on debugging and repairing the old line. The standard automated line for the production of juice from concentrates includes a water treatment system with several filters for water purification, pumps and filters, mixing tanks, a homogenizer, a pasteurizer, a heat exchanger, an aseptic storage tank, a packaging filling machine, washing equipment, an apparatus for pouring juice into bags and sealing. Concentrated juices, water, sugar and various additives are used as raw materials for the production of juices on this line. Concentrated juices are usually imported from other countries. They are used for the production of natural (reconstituted) juices, nectars and juice drinks. The latter have the least natural juice, therefore, their cost is lower than the cost of other products. As a rule, the assortment line of most of the new enterprises that work in this segment includes 10-15 products (less than half of them are natural juices, and most of them are nectars).
Finished products are packaged in Tetra Pak packaging. Glass containers are used much less frequently, since they cost more, are less practical, have a large weight (which increases the cost of transportation) and ensure the safety of the product worse.
The finished juice in a one-liter package is packed in cardboard boxes of 12-15 bags, which are then covered with plastic wrap. To service one automated line with a capacity of about 2 tons of finished product per hour, 25-30 people (including workers and managers) are enough. As in any other food production, the chief specialist at the juice production plant is a technologist.
It is recommended that new companies sell products through non-grocery stores, kiosks, markets, pavilions, small supermarkets, regional retail chains (if you can get there). In order to attract consumers' attention to their products, regional manufacturers organize promotions, including at points of sale, advertise on television (which is less effective and at the same time much more expensive) and on the Internet on local sites.
Please note: your juice production must be carried out in accordance with the requirements of GOSTs or technical specifications that are developed at each individual enterprise. You will also have to obtain a certificate of conformity for your products from Rospotrebnadzor.
Although juices are consumed throughout the year, these products are most in demand in most Russian regions in the summer. A certain increase in sales is also observed in winter - during the New Year holidays.
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