Squeezing the Facts out of Fresh Made Juice

The Big Carrot has introduced a new line of organic cold pressed juices; we’re pretty excited about it! Cold pressed juice is a current trend in most urban centres but what does it mean exactly? This blog post compares pressing and centrifugal juicers.

What is cold pressed juice?

Cold pressing juice refers to the use of pressure as the extraction medium.  There are two standard extraction methods;

Auger Juicers:  This process uses a slow moving auger and screen assembly that presses the juice from the fruits and vegetables.  This is often the type of juicer you might have at home in your kitchen.

Hydraulic Press juicers:  The gold standard of juicing by far is the hydraulic press.  It uses two plates powered by a hydraulic pump that exerts in excess of 1500 pounds per square inch of pressure on the fruits and vegetables. This method yields the maximum amount of juice from the fruits and vegetables and produces the finest, most nutrient dense and flavourful juice.

What is centrifugal juicer?

A centrifugal juicer uses a fast spinning blade that shreds the produce and through centrifugal motion, flings it into a perforated basket. The basket spins like a top loading washing machine and the juice drains into the collection spout. The perforated basket tends to aerate the juice, making it foam and introduces oxygen into the fluid. This is one disadvantage of the centrifugal juicer that will be explained a little later.

Does the mechanism of a centrifugal juicer produce friction and heat that “kills” the nutrients?

No, drinks produced in centrifugal juicers are not less healthy as is often touted in the market. The Big Carrot has been serving up fresh juice for over 10 years in our organic juice bar through these methods.  Anytime you have something that is moving or spinning quickly in contact with another surface, friction will produce heat, but if you’ve ever ordered a drink from us, you will notice the juice was not warm, it was the same temperature as the produce that went into the juicer.

Here are two important things to consider; the spinning blade produces no appreciable heat and not everything is susceptible to heat degradation. For example, minerals are elements, many of which were formed in the cosmic theatre of the birth and death of stars. If a mineral can survive the immense heat and pressure found inside a massive star, it can brave being processed through a juicer.

Heat degradation is an issue primarily (in the realm of food stuffs) with peptides and enzymes. This is because peptides and enzymes are comparatively large molecules, far larger than any vitamin or mineral. They are susceptible to heat degradation because tertiary and sometimes quaternary bonds dictate their final shape. These bonds are very delicate compared to the ionic or covalent bonds, which bind in vitamins and minerals. Having flashbacks to Grade 11 science yet?  In most cases a temperature of 150 degrees Fahrenheit is necessary to break these bonds and affect the decomposition of nutrients.

It’s not heat that is the enemy of juice, it’s oxidation.  Oxidation is the process by which a substance loses electrons to an oxidizing agent, such as oxygen.  For example, when you leave an apple slice exposed to air and it browns, this is oxidation. This reaction reduces shelf life.

The truth is that a hydraulic press juicer such as the one we use for our cold pressed juices is the best type of juicer. It produces no foam, extracts more nutrients, does not oxidize the juice, and tastes better.  All of this means it lasts longer in your fridge!

We make our centrifugal juices with organic ingredients on the spot for you to enjoy right away! They can be stored in an airtight container for up to 48 hours. We make our cold press juices in micro batches to maintain freshness, quality control and to provide an artisan product.  Our cold press juices are best enjoyed within 6 days. We offer two great choices, so enjoy, and rest assured, you are getting every last drop of goodness out of every juice we serve.


Dimitri Stefaniv – Juice bar staff and expert