The Italian blood orange is well-known for its beautiful color, unique taste, and high vitamin C and anthocyanins content. For over 20 years, Oranfrizer, a key player in the citrus fruit industry, has been working with Italian fruit and vegetable cooperative CSO Italy to share their special Sicilian fruit with U.S. consumers through fresh, high-quality juice.
A member of CSO Italy, Oranfrizer exports 100 percent not from concentrate (NFC) fresh juices to the U.S. under the Mongibello brand. Mongibello’s juice is squeezed from three different blood orange varieties, Tarocco, Moro, and Sanguinello, exclusively grown in Sicily. Nothing is added or removed; it is simply pure fruit. Producing and exporting this natural NFC juice comes with a set of unique food safety challenges.
Meeting Cold Chain Challenges
The Mongibello juice is gently pasteurized and then frozen until it reaches the consumer. Frozen, the juice has a shelf of 3 years; once defrosted, the shelf life is 60 days. As such, the most crucial challenge that needs to be addressed carefully and successfully is the respect of storage temperatures. This applies not only to the juice’s journey overseas but also to its storage in warehouses once it reaches the U.S. Maintaining the temperature is vital for both the quality and safety of the product; interruptions in the cold chain will deteriorate the product.
To meet these challenges, Oranfrizer monitors the shipping process carefully, providing clear information and rigorous instructions to ensure the cold chain maintained as the product travels from Oranfrizer’s Italian headquarters to U.S. supermarkets.
Safety Expertise Trusted by U.S. Importers
Oranfrizer began exporting its products to New York in 1997. Currently, Oranfrizer exports about 150,000 liters of blood orange juice to the U.S each year.
With almost 25 years of experience, Oranfrizer guarantees the safety of the juice by monitoring all the production processes with strict control procedures that guarantee the safety of the juice when exporting to the U.S. Constant attention is paid to each step: the selection of raw materials, processing, packaging, transport, and handling of the juice by maintaining the correct temperatures.
HACCP Compliance & Standards of Safety
Oranfrizer correctly follows Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) protocols for citrus juices to ensure juice safety. Mongibello juice uses only tree-picked fruit—performed exclusively by hand—which is then carefully selected for juicing, removing any unsuitable fruit. The natural juice undergoes gentle pasteurization. Packaging is an important factor in the food safety of exports.
In addition to following HACCP protocols, Oranfrizer has its suppliers apply the British Retail Consortium standard to ensure that the products are produced according to well-defined quality standards and minimum requirements.
Beyond minimum requirements, Oranfrizer’s experience has led to the development of specific quality control protocols implemented during juice production to ensure food safety. This is especially true in the management of suppliers by means of inspections in the field and in production. Scrupulous quality control during production plays a major factor in food safety, beyond the fundamentally important factors like temperature control, ultimately allowing U.S. consumers to enjoy the unique, authentic Italian blood orange.
CSO Italy is a cooperative founded in 1998. A unique organization in Italy, it represents the leading companies in the fruit and vegetable sector. CSO Italy members are located all over Italy and include not only producers, but also members of the technological supply chain, including companies specializing in the packaging sector, processing equipment, machinery, and logistics.