SOSUA, Dominican Republic- When shopping for juice it is absolutely imperative to look at the ingredients before purchasing, otherwise there is a very good chance that you will end up with sugar water with very little fruit content.
It was once a habit to just look for “100%” written somewhere on the outside of the container. This was once an international symbol that what you behold is in fact 100% juice. This was a simple way to shop, as the real juice was clearly differentiated from the sugar water.
But the sugar water peddlers have now appropriated the 100% logo as well, though their 100% does not mean juice.
A few days ago I was in a little supermarket in the Dominican Republic. I was looking for some juice. On the shelf before me was all kinds of cartons of good looking juices, they all had 100% written on the outside of them. I took initially took this to mean that they were all juice.
Then I looked a little closer.
I picked up a liter sized carton of strawberry kiwi juice knowing that these fruits would be really expensive to make 100% juice out of. I noted that the price was a little cheap — it was only 30 pesos, or a little under $1.
I became a little suspicious.
There was “100%” written on the carton, but as I read the ingredients, I became aware that what I was actually holding was sugar water.
The 100% label on the front of the carton actually said, “100% pure, natural, and nutritious,” not 100% juice.
The ingredients of this “juice” are water, sugar, citric acid, guar gum, natural flavors, and authorized colors.
No juice is in this “juice,” but the label has 100% written on it as smokescreen to mislead prospective buyers looking for real juice into buying 100% sugar water.
Sugar water being sold as juice is endemic on this planet. The containers look like juice, they are placed on the shelves next to juice, but they are not juice — it is just fruit flavored sugar water, soda pop without the soda water. There is nothing nutritious about this stuff, but it is sold as, apparently, juice.
It is my impression that most people do not read labels, they take a product for what it appears to be and then buy it — they do not look past the pinstripes.
When shopping for juice abroad, look passed the carton, look passed the labels, read the ingredients.
Real juice will have a fruit listed as the first ingredient.
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