The History Of Fruit Juice

By providing consistently excellent service here at Freshways, we’ve rapidly grown into the go-to dairy product supplier for independent retailers and cafés across the country. A lot has happened since our simple beginnings in 1990 as a small wholesaler in Acton. Since moving into our current facilities in 2001, Freshways have expanded to source and supply a wide range of own-label and branded food, including bread, yoghurt, fruit juices, cheeses, and eggs. By choosing Freshways as your supplier, you can be guaranteed to receive top quality service and products at competitive prices.

Did you know that juices were being extracted from fruits to produce tasty drinkable beverages as early as 8000 BCE? Read on to find out more about the history of fruit juice.


You may be surprised to hear that there was a rich history of extracting fruit juice prior to the 1900s, with The Dead Sea Scrolls (ancient Hebrew religious manuscripts) making reference to the mashing of pomegranate and figs for “profound strength and subtle form” as early as 150 BC. This may be one of the first instances of humans breaking down fruits in order to experience their countless health properties. There is even talk in The Old Testament of the bible about drinking the “blood of the vine”, meaning grape juice – although it is speculated that this may be referring to wine.

Originating in The Middle East, one of the first regularly produced juices was lemonade, gaining popularity following importation to 16th-century Italy, and quickly becoming a hit throughout Europe. The 18th century saw increased demand for citrus fruits, with lemon and lime linked to the prevention of scurvy. This even made its way into legislation a century later, as part of The Merchant Shipping Act of 1867, which required all ocean-bound British ships to carry citrus-based juice on board, or face punishment.

By the late 1890s, dentist Thomas B Welch had developed a pasteurisation method that allowed for the storage of juice, without it fermenting into alcohol. His groundbreaking idea involved squeezing grape juice into bottles before sealing them with cork, and placing them into boiling water. He then sold his new product as “Dr Welch’s Unfermented Wine” – the first known example of a juice company, with his products being manufactured and sold on a large-scale basis. Despite the popularity of this juice product, around the same time, the circulation of foreign fruit juices was being heavily regulated by tariffs. Import taxes were raised from 38 to 49.5%, though this did little to halt the fruit juice boom of the 1900s.

The 1900s

Around the 1910s, orange juice pasteurisation became commonplace due to an overpopulation of fruit in California. Needing ways to store and transport the fruit and juice, workers discovered that pasteurisation killed the microorganisms that cause fruits and vegetables to spoil. Just over a decade later, a physician named Max Gerson created his own organic fruit-based diet. Health practitioners have found that juice from fresh herbs and soft fruits can have healing benefits – just another reason to stock up on our range of healthy fruit juices!

The first widely available juicing machine was called ‘The Norwalk’, named after inventor Dr Norman Walker. This machine saw the introduction of juice into the diets of everyday people who would otherwise need to eat their 5-a-day. The 1950s saw another machine, ‘‘The Champion Machine’ released, as the first masticating juicer (a machine which heats up the product and destroys the live enzymes within). Alongside the traditional food blender, this decade saw the introduction of food and juice processing machines into countless households predominantly around The United states.

Health crazes ushered in by the 1970s saw juice and fruit-based diets really start to take off, with Californian Dave Otto tactfully opening a juice bar between two gyms in his home city. His health philosophy helped kickstart the fresh juice and smoothie craze. In 1993, the world’s first twin-gear juice extractor was produced. Made popular by the fact it could press out enzymes without losing them to the resulting heat exposure.

The Present

The present day has seen fruit juice become more popular than ever before, with the most trusted brands such as UHT, Johnson’s, Tropicana, Naked and Copella all available to buy from Freshways. The nutritional value of juice is well documented, and they can of course be beneficial to your health alongside the great taste. Used as a weight loss tool in certain circumstances, Meal replacement juice drinks are a current craze amongst gym-goers and those with a new year’s resolution to hit a weight loss target.

If you’re someone who struggles to eat enough fruit and vegetables every day, then adding fruit juice to your diet may help. One juice drink can have two to three servings packed inside, making it much easier to reach your target daily intake of healthy goodness. Portable, child-friendly, and modifiable for tastes and specific dietary preferences.these drinks are easy to prepare for yourself, but can also be purchased affordably, tasting just as fresh as if they were just squeezed. If you buy juice in bulk, expect excellent value from your purchase.

Your Juice Company For The Future

With the juice market booming and consumers flocking to get their health fix, why not buy juice in bulk? Freshways high-quality brands bring you a number of delicious options going into 2022 and beyond:

Naked Blue Machine

Blue Machine is crammed with blueberry-blackberry deliciousness and B vitamin boosts. Supercharged with fruits and vitamins including Vitamin B12 which contributes to the normal functioning of the nervous system.

Tropicana Orange Creations

Tropicana’s classic pure premium orange juice with an exciting twist. Available to pick up in an orange and mango variety, or an exciting orange and pink grapefruit concoction from one of the leading juice companies in the world.

Johnson’s Pink Grapefruit

Fresh and tasty grapefruit juice made from the juiciest sun ripened pink grapefruits. For a zesty pink grapefruit juice that tastes freshly squeezed.

Something Different?

Feeling something different? Freshways have a range of wholesale food and drinks available to quench your thirst or satisfy your appetite. As the UK’s largest independent milk processor, we are proud at Freshways to source all of our milk from cows farmed in the UK. We process and supply Whole Milk, Semi Skimmed Milk, Skimmed Milk, Homogenised, Sterilised and Channel Island Milk to a range of different clients. Here are just a couple of the alternative beverages we offer:

Vanilla Yazoo

Yazoo is a healthy drink which is 94% milk; naturally high in calcium, protein, important vitamins and minerals. Vanilla Yazoo tastes great as well!

Yoghurt Selection

At Freshways, we pride ourselves on offering only the freshest dairy products on the market and this is no different when it comes to our wide selection of yoghurts. Aside from offering clients our own delicious home-brand natural yoghurt, we stock some of your favourite branded products, including Muller, Yeo Valley, Onken and Activia.

Cheese Variety

Freshways is a British company that has scoured the globe to find the best quality cheese from a range of different countries and cuisines. From the finest Italian Mozzarella, to the salty but sweet Gruyere King Cut Swiss. Freshways has cherry picked the greatest examples of cheeses from around the globe.

Wholesale Food, Drink And Dairy Products At Freshways

Since our beginnings in 1990 as a small wholesaler, we’ve grown into one of the largest independent and family-run dairy suppliers in the UK. We’ve always aimed for providing the freshest and highest quality dairy products and baked goods at competitive prices. There are no third parties involved with our process, allowing us to offer fast, efficient, and reliable supplies of dairy. We understand that, for many businesses across the UK, fresh high-quality dairy and milk products are essential. As we only use cows farmed in the UK, we guarantee quality products every time.

At Freshways, we are dedicated to providing each and every one of our clients throughout London, Wales and the UK, with the freshest products available. From wholesalers and manufacturers right through to small businesses such as bakeries, cafes, hotels and retailers. We pride ourselves on being an independent and family-run business that offers only the highest quality products.

Want to buy juice in bulk? Simply get in touch with a helpful member of the Freshways team today.