Claire Phoenix is FoodBev Media managing editor – magazines. This is a personal blog and views expressed are her own.
It’s an astounding five years ago since Preshafood of Australia won at the World Beverage Innovation Awards in Munich with the brand Preshafruit.
It was the first time I have tasted a cold pressed juice and I was impressed how easy it was to differentiate between the different clear (not cloudy) apple variants – from Granny Smith to Braeburn to Cox’s orange pippin – it was a revelation and aided by some wonderfully stylish triangular PET bottles for space conscious transportation – a worthy winner. It had the juice of four apples in each bottle and twice the amount of vitamin C than in other bottled apple juice.
The MD at the time was Andrew Gibb who now runs the company ColdPress in the UK. Coldpress juices are sold in a hexagonal bottle, which means they can fit more into a cold press machine. Now available in 221 Waitrose stores, he is an evangelist for high pressure knowing that high temperatures of pasteurisation kill of the volatile top notes.
The company has launched smoothies into Tesco and nearly all of the major supermarkets with flavours such as raspberry, pear, apple, Aspell’s English blend, coconut pineapple and are tapping into the English apple juice market. As Andrew said though, sourcing excellent fruit is critical.
“HPP is a very unforgiving technology – you process poor fruit, it tastes like poor fruit” he said.
“We have now introduced fruit and vegetable juices, and others with carrot and beetroot – and now have a red, green and orange juice. We are also looking at cold press drinks with grains including chia, flax seed and basil seed. We want to be the world’s first global HPP brand.
But the big question with HPP is one of cost as they tend to be 10% more than other premium juices. However UK consumers are voting with their taste buds and coming back for more –even the big retailers are restocking and even increasing the number of SKU’s.
*Hitting sales of over £4 million in 2014, the forecast for 2015 is looking cheerful. *
The HPP juice category is niche and the focus is on Europe – they are in Northern Ireland, Malta, and Norway, with around eight or ten HPP juices available through Wholefoods stores. The HPP juice category is niche and the focus is on Europe – Coldpress juices are available in the UK plus Northern Ireland, Malta, and Norway, with around eight or ten other HPP juices available through Wholefoods stores.
“I’ve made all the mistakes with technology,’ he said, “so it would be great to license it in countries such as the US. Scale is increasing – we have a 420 litre machine today and our manufacturer has just produced a 525 litre and you can add intensifiers which make your process faster – but it’s still a batch process,” he concluded.
You can bet your bottom dollar the big guys are looking closely at this and trying to work out how to do it more cheaply. But with some things in life you only get the best – from the best – and sometimes that is worth paying for.
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