How Long Can Orange Juice Last || Here’s Something You Should Know

I am baffled when I think about the criteria used to name colors. It’s not hard to see where the color orange got its name. From the fruit of course! But if naming was based on food, why wasn’t red named tomato or green broccoli? Anyway, what counts are the varying beautiful shades in our world.

For some, a mere mention of oranges awakens their taste buds. It’s their favorite fruit. They can’t get enough of them. When they go to the grocery store, it’s among the first items on the list. If you grew up in the countryside where there were many orchards, do you remember harvest time? Your dad would expect everyone to be on the farm with the large baskets.

As the youngest, a smaller section was allocated to you. If they were high up, your big brother would step on a ladder to reach out for them. Though you were tired, all the fatigue would pale into insignificance once you gulped the freshly squeezed orange juice. How refreshing that was!

Over time, more companies have emerged to try and satisfy the high demand for orange juice. Popular brands are in the likes of Minute Maid that boasts of a global market. So in deciding what to drink, you are probably in a dilemma. Is it the freshly squeezed or the packaged one? Getting to know how long each of them can last might help you decide.

Difference between homemade and packaged orange juice

There exists a stark contrast between the two. The former is fresh and sweeter when compared to the latter. You buy fresh oranges at your grocery store, thoroughly wash and squeeze. The activity can be an opportunity to bond with your family members. For example, making the juice with your daughter can give you a chance to know what’s going on in her life.

For the manufactured, the orange pulp is mixed with sugar, water preservatives for longer shelf life. That accounts for the slightly different taste that they have. But it’s widely known that natural orange juice gives your body the much-needed Vitamin C.

Which of the two will last longer?

The manufactured orange juice will be consumed for more days in comparison to the freshly squeezed juice. As already mentioned, permitted substances are added to ensure it stays for a longer period. But does this mean that homemade juice must all drink within the same day? Not really.

If a citrus press is used, the drink can be enjoyed for up to three days if refrigerated. On the other hand, if your preferred tool is the centrifugal juicer, it could last until the next day. The quality of your juice is also dependant on the type of oranges you used. Were they fresh? Sweet or a bit bitter? The type of oranges will inevitably affect not only the taste but also the storage time.

For the boxed orange juice, the expiry date is indicated either at the top or bottom. If unsealed, you can have it for a couple of months. When opened, there are instructions on the pack stating the number of days you should consume it.

Indicators of spoilt orange juice

Indicators of spoilt orange juice

Disgusting taste

The sensitivity of the tongue is one amazing feature of the human body. The tip alone can detect the unworthiness of the juice. It might be sour or bitter. Even your one- year old will express disgust at the sip of the drink. Discard immediately to avoid stomach problems.

Foul smell

If you open the fridge and detect a vinegar-like smell, chances are that the juice is spoilt or at the edge of going bad.

Color change

Fresh juice will be deep orange. If you stored it in a transparent jug or bottle, discoloration will be visible. When you notice it has changed to a very pale color, likely, it won’t be fit for consumption.

Suspended particles

When rotten, an orange will normally develop mold. The same happens with fresh juice. The mold is seen floating in the bottle. For cartooned orange juice, pour a little amount in a clear glass and observe. If some particles are present, it may mean that the juice is unsuitable to drink.

Proper orange juice storage

In some cases, the problem could be in how we store our drinks. Here are some ways to ensure that a jug of freshly squeezed orange juice is safe.

Pour into clean containers

Thoroughly washed bottles preserve the juice a bit longer. Harmful bacteria in the shelves might contaminate them but when cleaned, chances of mold development are reduced. Plastics are okay but if possible, look for glass bottles. Their cool temperature makes them suitable for storage.

Keep the manufactured juice in a cool dry place

If you purchase juice in bulk, store the cartons away from direct sunlight. The warm conditions reduce their shelf life.

Refrigerate

Once satisfied, don’t leave your juice on the countertop or cupboard. Simply refrigerate. Hot days are particularly tricky since food generally gets spoilt fast when temperatures are high. Additionally, cold oranges used during the juicing process are much better than those at room temperature.

What if you had a small gathering but a lot of juice was left? Since you are single, it would be difficult to finish it all in three days. Worry not. Freeze the juice and consume it whenever you feel like it.

The bottom line

A glass of chilled orange juice might be the best compliment to an afternoon of catching up with your best friend. From a sweet taste on the tongue to a smooth flow down the gut, the drink is great! If you prefer natural juices, squeezing your oranges is a good option. Even though doing it manually might be tiresome, it’s fun when done with someone else. The packed orange juices are also okay though they stay longer than the homemade. However, ensure both are refrigerated. Whichever your option, enjoy the drink!

About Harris V.