How premium apple juice is produced
If you ask doctors about the ideal thirst quencher for athletes, you very often get the same answer: Apple juice spritz, i.e. apple juice mixed with mineral water. There is a good reason for that: While the water supplies the body with minerals, the fruit and glucose of the apple juice provides the necessary energy and also provide potassium, vitamins and refreshing fruit acids.
However: Apple juice is not just apple juice
High-quality premium apple juice, as produced by VOG Products, goes through a very strict processing procedure in which every step is studied and monitored from the receipt of the raw material to storage. The high-tech and at the same time careful processing procedure as well as a variety-specific tank storage ensure a product that is as healthy as it is unique in taste.
A new feature in apple juice production at VOG Products is a dry receiving line that went into operation in spring 2021. This provides a further leap in quality, as it allows the raw material to be transported extremely carefully. The apples - which must be free of rot on delivery, with only minor blemishes - no longer float in water for processing in the silos, but roll and travel on conveyor belts through the various checkpoints, overcoming differences in height along a zigzag course. This results in a major advantage over previous methods: As a "passenger", the apple neither gets dents nor other damage. This means that the raw material for the juice has a higher initial quality because it is completely “injury-free”, and therefore also goes into the processing in a healthier way.
The individual steps
Juice production takes place in several steps: The fruits are washed under high pressure to remove any possible germs, then ground and pressed. In the separator, coarse particles are sieved out before the juice is briefly heated in the pasteuriser which gently removes any harmful micro-organisms. Part of the juice is filled into containers for direct transport to the customers. Another part goes into the sterile storage tanks mentioned earlier. Some can hold up to one million litres of apple juice, making VOG Products one of Europe's leading fruit processing companies in terms of storage capacity.
Because the tank storage capacity has been continuously increased in recent years, different varieties of apples can also be stored in different quantities at different times. Which means: VOG Products can produce independently of the season and also on a variety-specific basis. That is an important factor in the cooperation with the globally active beverage and food producers who, on the one hand, value continuity in supply and, on the other hand, get different flavours from one and the same supplier and can thus mix individual creations.
Our conclusion: Apple juice is not just apple juice, neither in taste nor in quality.
Four out of five of the organic apples processed by VOG Products come from the cultivation of around 600 Bioland farmers in South Tyrol.
Picture: ©Südtiroler Apfelkonsortium
The Kissabel® apple (variety R201) is known around the world for its fruit pulp, which can vary from pink to red. The juice is just as attractive as the apple, mainly because its unique taste and a characteristic red colour ranging from violet to ruby red.
South Tyrol has been the largest organic apple supplier in Europe for many years. That is why the quantities delivered to the fruit processor VOG Products have more than tripled in three years.
EcoVadis rewarded the sustainability efforts of VOG Products with a silver medal.
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Each year, VOG Products processes around 350,000 tonnes of apples into juice, puree and concentrate. Water is indispensable in the production process: it serves as cooling and transport water. The company not only uses it carefully, but also several times over.
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Solid pack apples must meet the high quality standards of VOG Products and those of our customers, therefore they must fulfil a number of requirements.