For over 75 years, Rees Fruit Farm has been pressing award 
            winning sweet apple cider.

                Our apple cider is a by-product of the apples that we harvest 
            in our own orchards.  We grow approximately 30 different varieties 
            of apples and harvest thousands of bushels each year.  Every apple 
            is hand picked and thoroughly washed before pressing and bottling 
            the golden juice.  The apples we use may be from any variety we  
            have available to process.  Because of this, the juice may taste 
            different at different times of pressing.  It is our policy to 
            press only edible apples and discard any apple that is undesirable.    

                                        Cider or Juice?

                There is still much controversy for the definitions of each.  
            Because neither has been strictly defined, you may call it what 
            you want.  In our research, we have found and continue to use the 
            traditional definitions:

                Sweet Apple Cider:  The natural juice extracted from any 
                variety of apples.
                Hard Apple Cider:  The natural juice extracted from any variety 
                of apples that is allowed to ferment to itís own alcoholic 
                Apple Juice:  The juice extracted from apples of any variety, 
                thermally processed, possibly filtered to a clear liquid or 
                boiled to a concentrate with water added.

                                     What is pasteurizing?

                Pasteurizing is a process that eliminates bacteria and allows 
            foods to be safe to consume after being processed and stored.  The 
            most traditional method of pasteurizing is to heat the product to 
            a level that will kill or slow the growth of the possible harmful 
            bacteria.  Traditional thermal pasteurization is accomplished by 
            heating the food product to a certain temperature, holding it at 
            that temperature for a limited time, then rapidly cooling the 
            product to a safe storage temperature.  Thermally pasteurizing 
            apple juice is damaging to the natural consistency and benefits of 
            the juice.  Thermally pasteurizing apple juice separates the water 
            content from the sugar content and creates a clear/cloudy effect 
            with sediment.  It will also damage the nutritional value of the 
            juice by breaking down the nutrients.  Many processors will filter 
            this to a completely clear juice.  The FDA has approved a new 
            process called UV treatment.  This process uses a UV light and 
            cycles the juice thru a tube in which all juice is exposed to the 
            light and treated.  This has proven successful in eliminating the 
            possible harmful bacteria from juice without heat and does not               
            alter the consistency or change the nutritional value of the cider.  
            The benefits from pasteurizing makes it is safe for all people to 
            consume, including infants, sick and elderly.  Pasteurizing by UV 
            also allows all consumers to benefit from the nutritional value of 
            the juice.

                                        Why pasteurize?

                Simple, the FDA requires it from all fruit juice producers.  
            The FDA cannot control how the initial process of fruit juice is 
            handled, but can control the end result before it is purchased              
            from the consumer.  The FDA requires pasteurization because of the 
            possible harmful bacteria that can come in contact with the juice
            and become harmful to humans.  The temperatures that juice must be 
            stored at can harbor and enhance the growth of certain bacterias.

                                        What bacteria?

                E. coli, Salmonella & Cryptosporidium.  These bacterias are 
            not naturally present in the raw fruit, but introduced to the raw 
            fruit by either animals or humans. Washing the fruit with water 
            before pressing will eliminate the possible bacteria, but the FDA 
            cannot rely on producers to properly handle the fruit and juice.

                               Do we pasteurize our apple cider?

                Yes.  Our main concern with pasteurizing is how it would 
            change our cider and the consumer response from that change.  Our 
            customers like our cider just as it is, so obviously we didnít 
            want to change it.  UV treatment allows us to meet the FDA 
            requirements and keep our customers satisfied with our product.

                                   Do we use preservatives?

                Because we do wholesale our cider to retailers in the area, we 
            do add a preservative, potassium sorbate, to the majority of our 
            cider.  Potassium Sorbate is an all-natural preservative that has 
            no odor, taste or side effects.  The amount of preservative used 
            per gallon is very minute, but allows the cider to keep about 10 
            days to 2 weeks longer than without.  Because we are not required 
            to add a preservative to our cider, we also sell it without 
            preservative in our market.

                                How long will apple cider keep?

                Our apple cider will keep approximately 10 days to 2 weeks 
            without preservatives and 3 to 4 weeks with preservatives.  UV 
            pasteurizing does not change the length of time cider will keep.  
            If our cider turns before it is consumed, it will taste like 
            vinegar.  Apple cider may also be frozen for up to six months.

                    Do we add anything besides preservatives to our cider?

                NO.  Our cider is strictly the natural juice from apples.  We 
            do not add water or sugar or any other product except 
            preservatives to our cider.  Even our Original Apple Cider Slush 
            is simply cider that is frozen.  We do not add ice.  

                                 Original Apple Cider Slush?

                Rees Fruit Farm can claim fame to the original Apple Cider 
            Slush because we were the first to ever freeze apple cider in the 
            slush machine.  Amazingly enough, itís the sugar content of the 
            juice that freezes while the water content of the juice stays a 
            liquid.  Apple cider is a perfect blend of both, so there is no 
            reason to add ice.

                Sweet unprocessed apple juice provides the most nutrition of 
            all natural fruit juices.  8 ounces of apple cider is equal to 
            about 2 apples.

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