Eckes-Granini is one of the top-selling juice manufacturers in Germany. Orange juice in particular can be found in many German households. But instead of pure juice, the juice manufacturer now sells some of its products with a portion of sugar water. What you should pay attention to.

The Hamburg consumer advice center points out the cheating in a press release. Accordingly, the juice manufacturer has reduced the fruit juice in the Granini drinking pleasure orange. The PET bottle now also contains sugar water in the form of orange nectar. The pure proportion of orange juice was halved from 100 to 50 percent. Accordingly, after many years, the company removed the corresponding “100 percent fruit juice” reference.

At the same time, the sugar content was increased. According to the nutritional table, the product now contains 9.2 percent sugar (previously 8.8 percent). And this despite the fact that there is less fruit juice in the bottle, which naturally provides fructose. For a better taste, Eckes-Granini also sweetens the juice with sugar.

Consumer advocates gave the product the label “sham packaging”. The background is that the adjustment is not easily recognizable for consumers.

In a statement from mid-April, Eckes-Granini pointed out that a “combination of a smaller harvest combined with increasing demand leads to a sharp increase in raw material prices.” And: “In order to keep the recommended retail price (RRP) of the granini range stable this year, we have replaced the granini orange juice (fruit content 100 percent) with an orange nectar (fruit content 50 percent).” The company can use this measure to reduce the price keep constant for its products.

Consumer advocates argue that the company is not communicating the change clearly. It is not obvious to customers that the orange juice is diluted with sugar water. This is not an isolated case. The fruit juice content has also been significantly reduced in the Granini Selection Mango and Granini Selection Passion Fruit varieties. Instead, the company relies on fruit concentrate, sugar and flavors for these products.

At the beginning of the year, Eckes-Granini brought the new variety “Hohes C Leichte Orange” to supermarkets with the message “30 percent less sugar” with media attention. To do this, Eckes Granini diluted the orange juice with water, thereby reducing the sugar content and at the same time significantly increasing the margin, according to consumer advocates.

Not an isolated case! Other juice manufacturers have also secretly reduced the juice content in their products because of the high raw material prices. This is called “skimpflation” because customers have to pay the same price for inferior quality.

Anyone who discovers labels such as “new size”, “new formula”, “new enjoyment” or “improved recipe” on packaging while shopping should pay attention. What at first glance seems like a consumer-friendly benefit may be a hidden price increase. Consumer advocates recommend taking note of the contents of products that you buy frequently. For example, “butter 250 grams”, “milk 1 liter” or “chips 230 grams”.

FOCUS Online advises: Households should pay attention to the basic price when shopping. This must always be stated per kilogram or liter on the shelf or in the brochure and helps to compare different pack sizes of a product.

For certain foods such as cheese, sausage, butter or yoghurt that you buy weekly, it is advisable to always note the basic price in kilograms or liters. If the price suddenly increases, you can be sure that the retailer has increased the price or reduced the packaging unit.

Such basic price comparisons can be particularly helpful in the fruit and vegetable counter. In many cases, packaged vegetables are cheaper than loose goods.