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Freshly Squeezed: The Truth About Orange Juice in Boxes (civileats.com)
189 points by lelf 11 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 155 comments





Being a east central Florida native, I grew up picking Valencia's off neighborhood trees, before the terrible canker in the 90's forced the state agriculture office to basically bulldoze and burn every non-commercial orange tree in the state.

IMO, the real treat is fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, not orange. Fresh grapefruit juice tastes nothing whatsoever like the stuff they sell in markets, and has a sublime flavor that's both refreshing and delicious.


Honestly.. anything more than lightly processed is nothing like the original thing. We're shrinking the "informational" content of food for the sake of production rates. It was an obvious choice in early 20th centure. Now not so much.

I agree about grapefruit but I think the best way to eat is is halved with a bit of honey on top. This way I get all the fiber, more of the vitamins, and still get a healthy dose of delectable juice as a reward.

I used to have halved grapefruit piled with sugar as a kid, as I was taught, I suppose. Later I discovered that the sugar just made it seem a lot more bitter, like a flavour that had to be combatted. They taste much better if you go with the taste instead of fighting it! Now it's my favourite fruit, eaten whole like oranges.

As a kid, I was a fruit maniac, my favourites were Granny Smith green apples, grapefruit, and really strong, sour oranges (we knew someone who sold them in huge bags from their house, I've never tasted anything like them since, my mother made incredible juice from them too). I never realized they're all on the not-so-sweet side until reading the "Fruit is evil"-type comments here. Also I loved grapes from the vine outside my window, passionfruit, mangoes, strawberries, (all home-grown), and peaches, pears, rockmelon, honeydew, nectarines...gee I'm making myself hungry.


Or try a little salt instead of the sugar... it counteracts the bitterness. Quite surprising!

>before the terrible canker in the 90's forced the state agriculture office to basically bulldoze and burn every non-commercial orange tree in the state.

Could you elaborate more on this, or link me to a place where I can read more about it?


Was curious about this too. A minute after some quick googling: https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/article76614477.html

"Citrus canker was first found in the United States in 1910 not far from the Georgia – Florida border. Subsequently, canker was discovered in 1912 in Dade County, more than 400 mi (600 km) away. Beyond Florida, the disease was discovered in the Gulf states and reached as far north as South Carolina. It took more than 20 years to eradicate that outbreak of citrus canker, from 1913 through 1931, $2.5 million in state and private funds were spent to control it—a sum equivalent to $28 million in 2000 dollars.[11] In 26 counties, some 257,745 grove trees and 3,093,110 nursery trees were destroyed by burning. Citrus canker was detected again on the Gulf Coast of Florida in 1986 and declared eradicated in 1994.

The most recent outbreak of citrus canker was discovered in Miami, Dade County, Florida, on Sept. 28, 1995, by Louis Willio Francillon, a Florida Department of Agriculture agronomist. Despite eradication attempts, by late 2005, the disease had been detected in many places distant from the original discovery, for example, in Orange Park, 315 miles (500 km) away. In January 2000, the Florida Department of Agriculture adopted a policy of removing all infected trees and all citrus trees within a 1900-ft radius of an infected tree in both residential areas and commercial groves. Previous to this eradication policy, the department eradicated all citrus trees within 125 ft of an infected one. The program ended in January 2006 following a statement from the USDA that eradication was not feasible"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citrus_canker


Funny, I was picture a terrible old crony in government as the "canker" that made everyone bulldoze their non-commercial trees.

Related: America's outlawing of Blackcurrant berries to protect the timber industry.

https://www.businessinsider.com/blackcurrant-america-vs-euro...


Xanthomonas axonopodis, a bacteria that defoliate orange trees.

Seconding a fresh Florida-grown grapefruit. I used to pick them a lot as a kid. It's rare to find someone with a residential grapefruit tree in FL now.

I agree about grapefruit juice. I stopped drinking orange juice years ago but do occasionally drink grapefruit juice.

The real story here is not that Tropicana is chemically adulterated fruit-derived sugar water produced and stored at industrial scale. The real story is that the USDA lets PepsiCo call this product “juice” even though it’s nutritionally indistinguishable from Coca Cola.

Even freshly squeezed orange juice with no additives is almost nutritionally indistinguishable from Coca Cola.

In Shanghai, I found a vending machine offering fresh-squeezed orange juice. The front of the machine was a window, so after buying a juice you could watch as a few oranges were rolled into a press and crushed. Then you got a sealed cup with the juice in it.

The juice had barely any orange flavor at all. I concluded that fresh-squeezed orange juice is overwhelmingly just water.

This suggests that it is in fact distinguishable from Coca Cola.


Actually, that was most likely due to the fact that they weren't using the proper type of orange. Many places outside of Florida and even all over the world use the wrong oranges.

California oranges are for eating and have a clear, less sweet juice. And they don't produce much juice at all per orange. Florida oranges are completely different and are very fibrous and essentially inedible as a whole. But if you put them through a squeezer, they will make delicious, orange colored, sweet orange juice in huge quantities. Very much like the "fresh squeezed Florida orange juice" you get at the grocery store. Although, of course, much better. They aren't adding or concentrating that juice at all. It really comes out rich and sweet like that.

There are proper names for the different California and Florida variants, but they are generally colloquially distinguished that way.

It's strange, but I have never seen juicing oranges for sale outside of Florida. They are not as pretty and will appear splotchy and less bright, glossy orange. They don't look appealing on their own.


Trader Joes used to have 2 machines in the late 80s which were Fresh Peanut Butter and Orange Juice. Both machines ground the ingredients fresh on demand. Peanut butter went into little tupperware like containers. OJ went into jugs. It seems all current commenters who might frequent TJs are too young to have experienced these things. The biting tart flavor of fresh squeezed OJ is often what is attempted to be imitated by homestyle or tart labels. Trader joes non pasteurized is still not the same flavor.

A lot of grocery stores (Whole Foods comes to mind) have a self-serve machine in the grocery department that squeezes fresh oranges into a plastic bottle for you: http://c8.alamy.com/comp/JT6NJ6/self-served-orange-juicer-fr....

Fanta would be a more apt simile.

Coca Cola contains caffeine, which oranges decidedly do not.


I would love caffeinated fruit to start my day (whole fruit, not juices of course).

How about some coffee berries?

I wasn’t aware this was a thing. Thank you!

Chocolate-covered espresso beans. Enough said.

You could drop a bit of No-Doz in your juice, might make it taste bitter though.

Personally I hate pure caffeine. I find cocoa powder way smoother / less jittery, and generally less fatiguing.

Edit: sorry, I see, now, you wrote whole. Just swallow the No-Doz. But, again, while cocoa beans or powder for me.


That is true of basically any definition of juice.

Juiced fruits should be considered the same as full sugar soda and self regulated as such.

Except fruit juice has health benefits soda doesn't have. Fruit > juice > soda, and the gap between juice and soda is probably as high or higher than fruit and juice.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4045306/ https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100330151949.h... https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3519311/


The problem is the sugar load. No amount of nutritional value can justify it. You can get those nutrients elsewhere without the insulin response.

Exactly - If you eat an apple, you get a modest amount of sugar with some fiber to go with it. The fiber helps slow down the absorption of the sugar and lessens the insulin response.

If you drink a big glass of apple juice, you get the sugar load of eating multiple apples and get none of the fiber. It's basically like drinking soda.


Except that soda has other things in it that are bad and aren't called sugar. And juice still has many vitamins and minerals retained.

I get what you're saying, and I'm not claiming juice is healthy. But it's certainly heathier than soda. Whole fruit is, of course, far healthier than juice


For most of us vitamins is rarely a problem.. so if we ignored that.

Then do we have any studies to suggest soda contains "bad" stuff that juice doesn't.. I feel like we often associated natural things with being healthy, without necessary justification :)


> For most of us vitamins is rarely a problem.. so if we ignored that.

What are you basing that on?

> Then do we have any studies to suggest soda contains "bad" stuff that juice doesn't

Probably.

Look at a few labels of various sodas. You'll often find things like phosphoric acid, artificial colours, artificial preservatives, caffeine, artificial sweeteners etc.

Are these the worse things in the world? Probably not.

Are many of these things good for you? Probably not.

Do they do more harm than good? Possibly.

> I feel like we often associated natural things with being healthy

I feel like we often look at nutritional labels and draw conclusions based off of macronutrients/calories - without much contemplation of the ingredients


> Look at a few labels of various sodas. You'll often find things like phosphoric acid, artificial colours, artificial preservatives, caffeine, artificial sweeteners etc.

This is still just the Natural = Good, Artificial = Bad fallacy. You can't just list some stuff with chemically sounding names and say "look - scary bad chemicals!". What specifically are you claiming is bad?

You went from "soda has other bad things in it" to "probably, possibly, maybe" as soon as you had to be more specific.


> You can't just list some stuff with chemically sounding names and say "look - scary bad chemicals!"

I didn't say "look - scary bad chemicals!", you did.

> What specifically are you claiming is bad?

I provided a non-exhaustive list of things previously. You seem aware of that, so I'm not quite sure what you're asking here. If the list isn't specific enough, what were you looking for?

> You went from "soda has other bad things in it" to "probably, possibly, maybe" as soon as you had to be more specific.

Sure. I usually don't speak in definite terms - especially when I haven't looked up things of this nature and studies of these particular ingredients for years - probably over a decade. So I'm going off memory.

Feel free to research various ingredients in soda that fall under the categories I've listed (and beyond) and refute them being bad with data. Otherwise, you just aren't being very specific

Edit:

> This is still just the Natural = Good, Artificial = Bad fallacy

To be clear, I am not making that argument. I do not believe this, and this is a miscategorization of my point.

Soda is not equally as healthy/the same as juice. Whether marginally, or not, my point is that juice is healthier than soda


I asked what you were claiming was bad because I can't find any evidence that any of the things you listed are bad, the worst thing I can think of is the addictive properties of caffeine.

> Soda is not equally as healthy/the same as juice. Whether marginally, or not, my point is that juice is healthier than soda

I said almost, there is of course some tiny amount of dietary fiber in orange juice, and vitamin C (which would only have an effect if you were deficient). The downsides due to the large amount of sugar, and acid on your teeth would be roughly the same for both.

> what were you looking for? "artificial colours, artificial preservatives, artificial sweeteners"

Which ones? Your repeated use of the word artificial is why I believe you are succumbing to the "artificial = bad" fallacy.

> "phosphoric acid" From Wikipedia: "Products such as soft drinks that contain phosphoric acid pose no threat to human health in general."

I'm not going to do any more research than this, I only have so much energy for internet comment arguments, but feel free to provide justification for your claims.

I'm very tempted to invoke Hitchens Razor here.


> Which ones? Your repeated use of the word artificial is why I believe you are succumbing to the "artificial = bad" fallacy.

I opted to generalize in those instances. As there are a multitude of artificial colours/preservatives/sweeteners used in the soda industry.

Sure I could have said E150d/E102 instead of artificial colours. Or sodium benzoate/etda instead of artificial preservatives. Or acesulfame potassium/sucralose instead of artificial sweeteners.

However, someone could then point out "well X mainstream soda I drink doesn't have all those". Which could be accurate, as the formulas and ingredients of sodas vary.

However, the vast majority of mainstream sodas use at least one of those _types_ of ingredients.

Listing them all out felt unnecessary, I assumed the reader would have heard of or seen an example(s) of each/some and understand my point.

There are a few others per category that are widely used in the soda industry, so it would be a decently long list - to the point where such a list would likely detract from the point (or not, from your perspective)

Edit:

> "phosphoric acid" From Wikipedia: "Products such as soft drinks that contain phosphoric acid pose no threat to human health in general."

Phosphoric acid has been linked to kidney stones and osteoporosis. Does that mean everyone who drinks a coke will get a kidney stone and break their limbs? No.

If you could avoid drinking a coke/mountain dew every morning and have fruit juice instead, would you live a radically healthier life? Probably not, but it's healthier.

As I have mentioned earlier, it could just be marginally, but I think it's quite strange to suggest they are equally as heathy/bad as each other - which you appear to support


Do you know what dietary fiber is?

> soda has other things in it that are bad and aren't called sugar

Be specific.


How many apples does a persona typically eat in one sitting?

How many apples' worth of sugar is in a 8/12/20 ounce serving of juice?


These read like rhetorical questions, but for anyone else who didn't know the answer to the second one:

- apple juice has ~10g of sugar per 100ml; that's ~35g per 12 US fluid ounces.

- Google tells me that apples (variety is unspecified) have 10g of sugar per 100g. 100g is a plausible weight for a single apple, so that's ~10g per apple.


An important detail is also how fast the sugar is absorbed.

Juice is pretty much instant.. Where as an apple takes time to break down, even if you chew well :)


The usual claim on premium juice is 2 kg orange per 1 l (=1 kg) juice.

Whole oranges? Orange peel / rind probably accounts for a significant portion of the weight of fresh oranges.

Whole oranges, for sure. I can't see how you'd lose 50% mass if you've already discarded the peel/rind.

FWIW, citrus peel is a fairly valuable commodity since it's the raw material for production of limonene, which is a really good and biodegradable degreaser. IIRC it was discovered by NASA searching for a solvent for cleaning the space shuttle.


Except sugar isn't inherently bad for you. Refined sugar isn't great, because it lacks nutrients, but juice doesn't have that problem. Also, juice can improve insulin sensitivity and elicits a lower insulin response than most starches and proteins. The overall effect on glucose and insulin is neutral. Sugar also contributes to fatty liver less than saturated fat, and only does so in the context of a hyper-caloric diet.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/261757046_Effect_of... https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/29844096/


> Sugar also contributes to fatty liver less than saturated fat

I’ve seen multiple studies suggesting otherwise, sugar being in general responsible for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

That assertion will also be difficult to swallow for anybody that ever attempted a Keto diet. I can talk from my own experience with Keto, when I binge ate butter on cheese (aka fat bombs). I did not lose any weight and yet my fatty liver was gone after the 3 months I was on it. Also all my liver’s ALT and AST levels are perfect. And I must insist on this point: no weight loss was involved.

Also note that the study you’re linking, with 38 subjects observed for 3 weeks, is statistically insignificant and probably flawed, as small studies tend to be. When changing somebody’s macros, there’s an adaptation period involved and 3 weeks is not enough.

The funny thing about all claims regarding the negative effects of saturated fats is that:

(1) saturated fat was a major caloric source throughout all of human history and yes, we know what humans ate in the Paleolithic

(2) human fat itself is saturated, you know, the one the body starts consuming when hungry

Humans are equipped to efficiently digest saturated fats and starchy plants rich in glucose. Well actually humans only need about 600 calories from carbs, any excess is converted to fat.

Fructose on the other hand is completely unnecessary, when digested it is converted to fat or glucose and it’s toxic in high doses. You can live your whole life without eating another gram of sugar. You can’t say that about saturated fat ;-)

Funny enough you can make the same argument about the other public enemy, salt. You will literally die without enough sodium in your diet and yet the healthcare industry is fixated on vilifying salt, but not sugar. A huge double standard that has no basis in actual science.


Humans store saturated fat because it's stable and calorically dense.

I'm actually not against saturated fat, I'm just not against sugar, or any other macronutrient. The food matters more than the macronutrient composition. If your argument against sugar is that it's converted to fat, I don't really follow, especially given you're a proponent of a high fat diet.

Would like to see those studies om sugar and fatty liver (compared to other macronutrients).

Also, why do you believe saturated fat is necessary? Okinawas eat a very low saturated fat diet (traditionally) and have great longevity.


You didn’t lose any weight on keto because you were eating too much. You can still gain weight if you eat 4000 calories worth of spinach.

I know. But no, it’s impossible to eat 4000 calories from spinach :-)

I have a problem with binge eating and I think it is emotional.


Not impossible, mathematically speaking, but yeah, no one is going to willingly eat that much spinach.

But I bet you didn’t lose weight on the keto diet because you were eating too much cheese or something like that; perhaps not enough exercise to keep a decent weekly calorie deficit. That’s where you went wrong.

I agree on binge eating yeah but so is anorexia or bulemia.


>Except sugar isn't inherently bad for you. Refined sugar isn't great, because it lacks nutrients, but juice doesn't have that problem.

It's the nutrients to volume to "how easy to gulp a gallon" ration that matters, not merely having nutrients.


The nutrient:calorie ratio is more important than those other metrics you listed. Whey protein shakes are "easy to gulp" but show fairly high satiety ratings, for example. Liver has a very high nutrient:volume ratio and is considered healthy, brocalli has a low nutrient:volume ratio and is considered healthy.

>The nutrient:calorie ratio is more important than those other metrics you listed.

For health benefits. For the propensity to make you fat, the "easy to gulp tons of calories quickly" is also interesting regardless of the nutritional value of what you gulp on. Water for example has no nutrients and no calories, but even so it's better than an orange juice diet wise.


I hear that a lot in the US (never elsewhere), but the only people in bad shape are those who abuse fat food and sodas. I’ve never seen anyone obese from drinking too much fruit juice alone.

"I hear that a lot in the US (never elsewhere), but the only people in bad shape are those who abuse fat food and sodas. I’ve never seen anyone obese from drinking too much fruit juice alone."

You need to point your gaze downward. There are a great many children in the US who are given a sippy full of apple juice every waking minute of their lives - and they have the body mass to go with it. I'm sure they all graduate to soda or "sports drinks" by the time they're in your field of view.


I guarantee you that those kids eat fattening things besides juice daily too.

Around here, that’s mostly a cost issue. Hawaii for example has a real obesity problem relating to fruits and fruit juces.

However, insulin response is not just about total calories. Fruit juice is at the extreme edge becase of how rapidly you can consume and absorb sugar.


Do you have a study showing the average breakdown of the Hawaiian diet?

Fish, rice, spam, sugar and salt. With a few loco mocos thrown in for fibre.

> I’ve never seen anyone obese from drinking too much fruit juice alone.

You have whether you realized it or not. Fruit juice has just as much sugar as soda and none of the fiber from fruit that decreases your absorption. There are millions of people going to the gym and trying not to eat onion rings when the orange juice (or cranberry, or coconut water, etc.) they drink is what is actually keeping them fat.


It is not abuse, it is biochemistry. Your body is extremely efficient at absorbing carbs because in nature they only appear mostly encapsulated in fiber which gates their abortion. If you absorb a large amount of sugar your body has to immediately turn it to fat with insulin or you die. This results in a situation where you have met your caloric needs for the day but you will get very hungry again even though you met your needs. Most people can't deal with that and succumb to the natural desire to eat. The high sugar loading destroys your satiety mechanisms.

Your post is very well-written, but fructose does not affect insulin. Fructose is absorbed directly in the gut and converted to starch in the liver.

I don't want to stop the anti-carb echo chamber, though, because it's helped a lot of people.


This doesn't sound right.

The Wikipedia entry for fructose[1] has this to say:

Excessive consumption of fructose may contribute to insulin resistance, obesity, elevated LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, leading to metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

So it would appear fructose does cause an insulin response.

However, it then goes on to say:

Uptake of fructose by the liver is not regulated by insulin. However, insulin is capable of increasing the abundance and functional activity of GLUT5 in skeletal muscle cells. (emphasis mine)

GLUT5 is also expressed in skeletal muscle,testis, kidney, fat tissue (adipocytes), and brain.[2]

1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fructose

2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GLUT5


High fructose consumption has its own set of health problems. There is still a lot of glucose in fruits. There is usually a large difference in glycemic index for whole/juiced fruits. Soda being mostly high fructose corn syrup still has a tremendous glycemic load.

Insulin doesn't turn sugar into fat. It causes cells to uptake nutrients, including glucose, to be used as fuel. Only the liver converts sugar into fat, and the effect is pretty minimal, on the order of a few grams of fat per day (outside of a hyper-caloric diet).

Lipogenesis does not only occur in the liver. Lipogenesis occurs in adipose cells as well, and insulin stimulates this process.

I have a feeling that that is because refined sugar is absorbed in a different manner than the sugar in juice. Just speculation though.

You can "prove" this by looking at the glycemic index. Glycemic index is not a napkin math thing, its done by making people eat or drink something and watching what their blood sugar does.

A raw orange is 31-40.

Orange juice is 46-54.

Coca-cola is 63.

I think juice may be a _LITTLE_ better than soda. I still choose to drink neither, and think I am better off for it.


"I think juice may be a _LITTLE_ better than soda. I still choose to drink neither, and think I am better off for it."

You're making a very good choice. I would encourage you and others to consider the raw oranges 31-40 GI as, itself, very high and akin to something like dessert or a special treat.

Or, to expand on what a child of your post expressed:

soda < juice < fruit < ... < ... < vegetables/nuts


It depends on the fruit / vegetable. Some fruits like avocadoes and olives have very low GI and some vegetables like potatoes have very high GI.

Right, fruit > juice > soda, and the gap between juice and soda is as high or higher than the gap between fruit and juice. To say juice is only a little better than fruit is to say fruit is only a little better than juice. If you have access to fresh fruit, great, but not everyone does and having juice might be better than no fruit products at all.

It's stupid honestly, fruit juice are healthy in normal quantity. Like everything don't abuse it.

Just like alchohol, but that's not how people think of the juice they buy at the grocery store.

Maybe in the US. But I've never heard about abusing fruit juice before moving here.

Most countries don’t have the sugar most Americans do in their daily diet. Look at the sugar in white bread.....

I Just look at total g of sugar and total calories.

Do you mean people who abuse carbs? Fatty foods don’t really get you. It’s the carbs.

Those sample sizes and selection are not very good. 22 volunteers in one, and 30 people in a narrow age range in the other.

the response citing research supporting an unpopular opinion gets voted down while the post expressing the popular opinion that doesn't cite evidence gets voted up.

hn voting isn't working. pretty typical


(2009), and doesn’t seem to differentiate flash-pasteurized options like Odwalla and Costco’s brand, which have a taste much closer to fresh-squeezed. I’m guessing those products omit the deoxygenation and flavor enhancement described.

I have very little idea what I'm talking about here, but would that really be possible? Even if you import oranges, there are still going to be times when oranges aren't in season anywhere, I would think. The oranges and/or orange juice have to be preserved one way or another so they can be stored.

There is also high pressure pasteurization too for juices now.

Didn’t someone died drinking odwalla because of exactly this?

"Following the E.coli outbreak, an outbreak that was caused by Odwalla not following proper sanitary procedures that caused the death of at least one child, Odwalla adopted flash pasteurization and other sanitization procedures."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odwalla


I grew up on a small orange farm in SoCal and have never heard of a Californian saying Florida oranges were better. We could get almost year round oranges locally so I’m not really sure why the author would inject that Californians would say Florida is better. We also grew navels and valencias. The navels were amazing for fresh juice if you drink it right away.

If you really want to treat yourself, go find some Ojai pixies. So delish.


Fresh oranges are good no matter where they are grown.

I too grew up in SoCal and remember eating backyard grown oranges as a kid - nothing is better than a fresh orange, I dont bother with boxed juice most of the time, I'd rather eat the fruit.


> But Navels have a lackluster flavor compared to the Valencia

I disagree with that. Valencia was a good old variety from the 'blancas' group of oranges, but is not the best variety. There are even better Valencia oranges (the newer "Valencia seedless " delta and midnight varieties for example). And many navels score higher for taste also than Valencia.


Yes, where I'm from (Australia) navel oranges are considered the premium eating orange.

I'm fortunate to live by local Florida orange growers. Nothing like juice made from Valencia Oranges.

The economics of Oranges and juice are fascinating. In Florida, we had a major outbreak of citrus canker that made most of the oranges grown here unsuitable for sale by USDA standards (still safe for consumption). So, off to the juice factory to be stored in those massive vats.


I'm even more fortunate: I live in Spain so I order Valencia oranges directly from producers in the actual region of Valencia.

When not on season, I buy oranges from South Africa or wherever, but I can't stomach the bottled juice. I don't know what flavor pack they use here but it doesn't taste even remotely like the real thing, I'd rather make juice from the worst oranges in the supermarket than drink bottled.


Normally I wouldn't want to burst your bubble, but one-upsmanship is a pet peeve of mine. The Valencia orange was developed in California; Floridian Valencia oranges are just as valid.

The Valencia orange is more like a family of several similar oranges currently. Citrus can "clonate itselves" via seeds, so a Valencia orange in California and other in Florida can be the same plant, or have almost equal (but not identical) genetics. Is complicated to explain.

When you talk about a Valencia orange in Florida now is often the clone SPB-1-14-19, sligtly hardier than the original tree from California and different also than the Hughes clone if I'm not wrong.

Producer on the other hand is not the same as hybridizer. The original tree was developed in California but is cultured in all suitable areas of the planet. Their patent has expired long time ago


FWIW, details from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valencia_orange :

> William Wolfskill .. migrating to California .. hybridized the Valencia orange, a sweet orange, naming it for Valencia, Spain, which had a reputation for its sweet orange trees. .. The success of this crop in Southern California led to the naming of Valencia, California.

> ... In the mid 20th century, Florida botanist Lena B. Smithers Hughes introduced major improvements to the Valencia orange .. the Hughes Valencia bud line [make] up some 60 percent of all Valencia oranges propagated for cultivation in Florida


>Normally I wouldn't want to burst your bubble, but one-upsmanship is a pet peeve of mine.

Your comment would have been much more pleasant and no less informative to read without that first sentence. The only "one-upmanship" I detected was yours.


The original posted "I'm fortunate" with a nice story about something they enjoy in life (orange juice from local farmers). Then the other one posted "I'm even more fortunate" and wrote about how their oranges were somehow more authentic. To me, it's the definition of one-upsmanship.

I live two thousand miles away from the nearest orange tree, so I'm not sure how I'm competing with them.


Yes, to be honest, I now realize I was a bit of a jerk with that comment. Sorry. And also, nice to learn that the variety doesn't actually come from Valencia!

<3

interesting. in SoCal there are a lot of urban citrus trees growing amongst the houses and apartments, including Valencia oranges. most of the time, the oranges are a bit on the tart side, but there are some sweet ones here and there. IDK what makes the difference. maybe sun exposure on the tree, or more cold weather in a given year. in any case, i'm surprised at how many go to waste.

... which leads to my question: what happened with all the citrus greening disease in Florida? i heard it had destroyed a lot of trees. have they found a good way to combat that?


Sweet citrus needs heat. You can grow sweeter fruit farther from the coast. If you're near the coast, plant it in an area that collects heat.

Citrus needs a lot of fertilizer. I finally did the calculations one year and I was astounded at how much nitrogen I needed to apply. Once I did, I got amazing yields. Micronutrients are important too, but man, that nitrogen. In socal, stick to an acidifying source like ammonium sulfate or cottonseed hulls.


Some Citrus are much hardier than another. Tangerines, the fruit that gave its sweetness to oranges are much hardier (orange is an hybrid, it does not exist in nature).

Grapefruits suffer even more with cold than oranges


> most of the time, the oranges are a bit on the tart side, but there are some sweet ones here and there. IDK what makes the difference.

Oranges are a type of fruit created twice, so can be split in two big groups: Sweet oranges, the fruit that we eat normally, and sour oranges, often used in landscaping and bitter (being bitter they do not attract vandalism). Sweet oranges include several subgroups also. Some are more tart than other.


Interesting use of the word vandalism.

Well... Trees in the streets have an economic value attached, as any other public property. Damaged trees have to be replaced again and again.

People picking oranges carelessly lead easily to crashed stems, ugly patches of dry foliage and damaged trunks. Fruit in the streets works great for some locations, not so for other ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


> what happened with all the citrus greening disease in Florida?

Globalisation happened. People basically does not care about it, but new plant diseases are a big problem for the economy of a country.


It's interesting the degree to which people will defend their fruit juice drinking in this thread. I wonder if it's a mild form of addiction.

I used to drink a lot of OJ when I was still under the illusion it was healthy to do so. Simply stopping that I lost about 15 pounds without changing anything else. It was tough at first, I really craved it and it was a daily habit. It's turned out to be the biggest health improvement I've made in recent years.


Sugar is absolutely addictive. And juice is just sugar.

Whole fruits are healthy because of the fibers and nutrients in the pulp+skin. The fiber slows absorption and helps with insulin spikes.

Even "fresh juicing", which is crazy popular, isn't the same as just eating the fruit.


> Whole fruits are healthy because of the fibers and nutrients in the pulp+skin.

In that case, shouldn't we distinguish between juice stripped of those vs. unfiltered juice?


It’s not “just sugar.” It’s mostly fructose, the worst sugar, known to stress the liver like alcohol. And unlike most other calories it does a poor job of triggering satiation.

Fruit juice is evil.


To expand on my post, I should add:

Fruit is evil.

The fruits we buy in the supermarket (or hipster organic farmers market) bare little resemblance to the less sweet and less palatable fruits that humans would have eaten prior to cultivation. Through an ongoing process (over multiple millennia) of artificially selecting for higher sugar content, we have turned nature’s fruits into the equivalent of candy bars.

If you want nutrients, eat vegetables.


Awareness that fruit is not a pure health food is good. "Equivalent of candy bars" may be overstating the case. Raw fruit at least delivers its sugars in a matrix of fibers which change the absorption profile, induce satiety, and even provides a natural limit on how much you can consume, among other benefits.

There are sometimes better choices than an apple, but an apple is definitely better than a candy bar (or most breakfast cereals, granola bars, etc).


I admit "Equivalent of candy bars" is definitely overstating the case, but it's hard to accurately state the case in a world where meme-grade sound bytes have the most impact. Absent sufficient nuance, the "fruit is healthy" message is borderline dangerous advice.

I hope people don't take this kind of simplistic advice on such a complex topic. Actual fruit, although it tastes sweet, is impossible to eat in quantities that are as harmful as junk food. They also provide tons of fiber, vitamins, anti oxidants and other beneficial nutrients. Some fruits are sweeter than others (pineapple, for example), but for the most part the vast majority of people would be better off if they ate more fruit.

Vegetables are great, too.


If you're talking about certain fruits in certain contexts, I agree with you in principle—if you are educated about the nutritional reality of fruits, you can certainly include them in a healthy diet. But I still maintain that absent sufficient nuance, the "fruit is healthy" message is borderline dangerous advice.

Without nuance and education, "fruit is healthy" translates to "fruit juice is healthy."

Without nuance and education, "two serves of fruit per day" translates to "I'll eat a fruit salad and a glass of orange juice for lunch at my sedentary desk job."

Protip: chop up a large broccoli and sauté in a wok with olive oil, salt, pine nuts and chili flakes for a few minutes. Finish by squeezing half a lemon on top. Serve alongside a modest serving of protein. That shit is a meal, and damn tasty.


I love how people jumped from "fat is evil" to "fruit is evil". As if Americans, and yes it is always Americana, were invested in making everything extreme always.

I guarantee you that you can eat tons of apples, oranges and other fruits every day and not get fat.

Also, you can't live off vegetables only. They just don't have enough calories to keep you going whole day. And you do need some amount of calories to perform and survive.


There's so much wrong with that post that it's hurting my brain.

I don't know how you got from "fruit is bad" to "you can only eat vegetables" but that must have been a sweet trip. You do know there's other foods, right? Like plant oils, meat, dairy, and chocolate cake.

And if that wasn't hurting my brain enough, you think vegetables don't have calories? So you've never heard of the potato, have you? Or carrots, sweet potato, beetroot...


"If you want nutrients, eat vegetables." meanwhile fruits are bad. Are you supposing me to assume that he meant "vegetables and bacon, but keep off fruits"? That would essentially make keto only not-bad diet.

You cant sustain on carrots and beetroot. You just cant, caloric density is too low. You would have to eat too much volume of it. But, go ahead and try that. Eat only them and no nuts, no oil, etc. Observe how much active and performing you are after few days. Vegetarians don't live off vegetables only either.

Vegetables are very low on calories. That is literally why they are recommended for diet - but eat a lot of vegetables advice is not nearly the same as as "everything else is bad, eat vegetables".


Wow, you're just wrong on the basic facts. Good luck with your life.

I'm not American.

So, even eating spoonfuls of sugar is better than drinking OJ?

Probably about the same but at least the spoonfuls of pure table sugar (sucrose) don’t come with pretensions of healthfulness.

And without the huge quantities of citric acid, the table sugar is less hyper-palatable. The associated acids make fruit juices almost perfectly engineered to maximize consumption. (The recipe is so perfect that Coca-cola uses surprisingly similar ratios.)


Not surprising. I gave up a number of bevreges that I enjoyed after reading of a very interesting study.

They were testing the effects of calories as liquid or solid. The subjects could eat whatever they wanted in the study, the calories of which were carefully recorded. Then they added 1750 calories/day of either liquid as soda or juice, or solid, as jellybeans. They then measured how much the subjects adjusted their other calorie intake (the groups all rotated through solid, liquid, control).

When each group was on added solids reduced their intake of other foods by an average 1500 calories/day, negating all but 250 kcal/day of the extra intake (still a non-trivial addition, but...).

When each group was on liquids, their change in intake of other foods was negligible -- essentially all 1750 extra calories per day was added to their 'bottom line'.

The milkshakes & juices are missed a bit at the beginning, but it's definitely much easier to maintain weight than it used to be, and I've seen friends get even more spectacular results by merely cutting caloric beverages (one who used to have a case of Gatorade in his truck all the time lost so much so fast his wife thought something must be wrong and made him go to the doctor to get checked).

I thought it was quite interesting, and hope some others do too...


After I hadn't had routine bloodwork for a long time, my HbA1c check shown 6.8 which is diabetic, I hard stopped juices, potatoes, white rice, while flour, sugar and decreased my portions. I discovered an entire universe of various flours and I am still totally unsure which sweetener or not-sugar-sweet-plant is safe to eat but I figure tiny amounts is OK. Dropped to 5.2 in four months so I figure I am on the right track. I still crave desserts hard but you can get desserts sweetened by something other than processed sugars and you can cut them really small and eat just a tiny bite which I found is enough to sate that craving. I am surprised how little all the diabetic advice doesn't emphasize the smaller portions trick both for meals and for desserts.

I'm not going to "defend" fruit juice, but grapefruit juice is quite good and usually contains less sugar than orange.

Unfortunate that it interferes with hormonal birth control :(

And a number of other drugs.

Small quantities of orange juice are recommended on the vertical diet.

It’s crazy the number of really smart people who are steadfast in their belief that fruit is good. It’s non-stop propangda starting at birth, direct from the mothers mouth.

I wonder where this meme started and why? I cant imagine ‘big fruit’ is that big or sinister.


> I cant imagine ‘big fruit’ is that big or sinister.

Are you familiar with the phrase “banana republic” and it's origin?

Big fruit is, historically, not any less sinister than big oil, and, while less influential, powerful enough to be a major international force, and drive wars and major power policy.


Wow, yes, good point.

> It’s crazy the number of really smart people who are steadfast in their belief that fruit is good

Is probably because we, humans, had seen before what scurvy can do to the body when you stop eating oranges, fruits and vegetables for just one or two months.


People in general are not making conscious choices to seek out foods that give them vitamin C. Why would they? They don't have to seek out vitamin C and they still won't get scurvy with even a 7/11 or burger king diet.

Significant amounts of vitamin C are in potatoes. People in general don't even know that, so I don't buy the idea that people are generally seeking out foods for their vitamin C value to prevent scurvy.


potatoes are vegetables.

The drive to eat a special kind of food sometimes is common to many mammals. Not much different to being thirsty when you are dehydrated. Everybody experience sometimes a "thirst" for salt (in hot areas), sugar, or (in very cold areas) fat. Is a survival mechanism wired in our brain and not uncommon at all.

I bet that we would intuitively seek for foods rich in vitamin C if getting short of it.


I'm not talking about an innate drive to eat fruit. Many/most western people have been convinced, through things like the food guide pyramid, that fruit is "good for you" and a "healthy choice".

This isn't a case where your body is craving a vitamin, and urging you to eat an orange. Your mind is saying "this is the right thing to do!", when in actuality, it's spiking your glucose.


Probably because nearly every study points to fruit being very healthy for you. Probably because it's high in nutrients, fibre, and flavonoids, and very low in anti-nutrients (when ripe). It's crazier the number of people who think sugar is bad for you no matter the context or package it comes in.

I grew up in the US, but my wife, inlaws did not. I have a daughter, who is only 2. Sams Club started offering juicing at the store last year. You see them fill up a machine w/ oranges and it cuts, grinds, and does whatever...and out comes fresh juice.

Maybe me having grown up on American sugary substance, my palate has gotten worse. But my wife, inlaws definitely prefer the fresh one when I do a blind taste test. Me...I'm just like meh, no difference, just get me the box one (which is like 1/3rd the cost). My 2 year old...that's the only one she'd drink. She did not touch the box juice before, and I was surprised she liked the fresh one, and asked for more.


> Maybe me having grown up on American sugary substance, my palate has gotten worse. But my wife, inlaws definitely prefer the fresh one when I do a blind taste test. Me...I'm just like meh, no difference, just get me the box one (which is like 1/3rd the cost).

I'm an American and I can definitely taste the difference between box juice and fresh-squeezed juice. I think the former still had the "base" flavors; but the latter definitely has a more complicated and pleasant taste, with more "nasal" flavors are totally absent from box juice.


> Maybe me having grown up on American sugary substance, my palate has gotten worse.

Serious question: how is your sense of smell?


My smell is pretty good. Taste...meh.

Example: Things that my wife feel is salty, like can soup, I don't give a second thought to.


Hmm, well that's quite interesting then, because the ability to notice nuanced flavours should have more to do with the smell of food than whether the taste buds are desensitized or not.

If your sense of smell is still good, it is very likely that you do taste all of these things, and the problem is more one of attention. The simple thing to do is to train that. Simply eating more slowly and trying to focus on what you smell when chewing should already make the flavours noticeable to the brain. It is easier if your nose does not have to "compete for attention" with the other senses, so closing your eyes will help, as will being in a noise-free environment.

As for the taste, if you don't notice salty soup your taste buds are indeed likely t obe desensitized. But even if you "grew up" on food too rich in salt and sugar, that not a permanent thing. You could try a kind of "taste detoxing" month - reducing salt/sugar intake to essentials for a while by setting strict rules to what kinds of sugars are allowed. It's hard for various reasons, but it works - WheezyWaiter made a very entertaining and IMO "neutral" video showing his experience trying it[0].

So you should be able to address both if you want. I recommend it! In general, getting in touch with one's senses is an enriching and fun experience (not just for tasting food).

[0] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBtslkL5nUA


Good advice, as far as it goes:

>try something new for breakfast: a whole Florida Valencia orange ...

Usual way to do this is to slice into wedges and bite against the inside of the peel, leaving much of the pulp attached.

An easier, less wasteful way: Using a sharp, heavy knife, slice patches off both stem and blossom ends, down to the pulp. Halve along the equator and lay equator-side down on a cutting board. Now "shave" off patches of the peel with short downward strokes, rotating the orange half frequently to maintain an easy cutting angle.

Finish by cutting into bite-size pieces, and grab yourself a fork. Squeeze a fresh Key lime over the top, for extra flavor complexity.


If you haven't tried fresh carrot juice, you don't know what you're missing.

I got myself this cheap machine for that purpose:

https://duckduckgo.com/?q=mean+juice+machine&t=chromeos&iax=...


If you can get your hands on a pineapple orange, they are truly Florida’s finest IMHO. Also they were synonymous with juice oranges in earlier times before they switched to Valencia oranges. Unfortunately the trees are very susceptible to disease, or so I hear.

Probably still rings true in 2019, but I think it should have a (2009) tag behind the title.

is the industrial food era about to fade ?

Offtopic. I recently bought a juicer. But turns out that after drinking one glass of fresh orange juice, my face turns pale, and I start sweating. It's nothing serious (I hope), but curious if anyone can recognize/explain this phenomenon? I have no such effect when eating large amounts of sugar. And I have no known allergies (recently tested in the hospital for another issue).

… did you ask a doctor about this? You should be asking a doctor about this. Not people like me, who'll tell you this sounds like a potential vitamin overdose or something.

Yes, thanks, I'm aware of the perils of internet medical advice; I just wanted to be a little more informed before I visit my doc again!

You may have developed an allergy to Oranges. I grew up drinking orange juice and eating oranges my whole life and a few years ago I developed an allergy to them and a bunch of other common foods. I'd bring it up with your doctor and get tested for it (along with other common foods). Apparently an allergy to oranges is fairly common.

...and it usually occurs with an allergy to other citrus fruits, seeing as they contain much of the same chemicals.

Look into oral-allergy syndrome. When I've experienced it, it has only meant that I hadn't had X (oranges, celery, etc.) in a long time and it would dissipate as I ate more X.

Possibly stupid question: Did you thoroughly clean and wash the juicer first? Might have been some residue from manufacturing.

also not to forget the insecticide residues on the oranges themselves

Restaurants always advertise "Freshly Squeezed" orange juice on their menus, but that's become meaningless. I like to ask the waitstaff "Was your orange juice squeezed here, on the premises?". If the answer is "no" I usually order something else.

Err.. Definitely ask a doctor first, but after I would ask if you turn pale after simply eating that amount of oranges



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