Frequently Asked Questions
We will be happy to answer frequently asked questions. Simply select the area that particularly interests you: Products, plants or shop order. Click on the desired question – the respective area then opens and the answer “pops up”. If you are interested in health benefits of the Aronia berry, please visit our Aronia Berry page. The plant itself is subject of our Aronia Plant page.
Aronia Original Products
The main growing areas of the Aronia berry have always been in Eastern Europe, but the dark purple superberries are also becoming increasingly popular in other parts of the world. In Germany the Aronia is planted on more than 500 hectares. About half of this area is cultivated exclusively for our Aronia ORIGINAL products. Thus the berries for our 100% Aronia direct juices, which you can buy in health food stores or our online shop, come from organic and Demeter certified farmers in Germany and are also processed in regional juice pressing plants.
Are all Aronia ORIGINAL products organic?
Yes, all our currently available Aronia ORIGINAL products are certified organic or are products from the conversion to organic farming. Our organic status can be seen on the official organic inspection number and EU organic logo on the packaging.
Why are other juices with Aronia cheaper?
This is a question of quality: Is the juice a direct juice or Aronia juice from fruit juice concentrate? With mixed juices: What is the percentage of Aronia juice? If it is direct juice, does it come from the first pressing and is of ‘motherjuice’ quality? Are organic Aronia berries used for the juice? And where do the berries come from? Are the berries purchased directly from the grower or from the retail market? Where are they pressed and bottled? All these considerations and many more play an important role in pricing.
With Aronia ORIGINAL’s Aronia juices you can be sure:
100% direct juices in ‘motherjuice’ quality from organic Aronia berries, purchased directly from organic growers, pressed and bottled in experienced juice pressing plants.
We do not use crystal sugar in most of our products. If sweetening seems necessary, we use alternative sweeteners such as rice syrup (e.g. for our Organic Aronia Crunchy), agave syrup (e.g. for our Organic Aronia Fruit Spread) or grape juice concentrate (e.g. for our Organic Aronia Jam Extra). Exceptions are the Organic Aronia Berries in dark chocolate, the Organic Aronia Mulled Wine and the Organic Aronia Punch: here raw cane sugar is used for sweetening.
Summarized: The Aronia ORIGINAL core assortment, consisting of Organic Aronia juice, Dried Organic Aronia Berries and Organic Aronia Powder is completely without added sugar or sweeteners and contains only the natural fructose of the Aronia.
Based on experience, we recommend taking 100 ml of organic Aronia juice, 1-2 tablespoons of dried organic Aronia berries or 2 tablespoons of organic Aronia powder daily. Find the ideal amount for you, because every person is different and tolerates Aronia products differently.
When should I take the Aronia juice?
If you would like to drink the Aronia juice pure, many of our customers have found that a daily sip after a meal, preferably after breakfast or lunch, to be a good idea. Apart from that: enjoy Aronia whenever you feel like it.
Can I also mix Aronia juice?
Of course you can enjoy Aronia juice with mineral water as a refreshing spritzer or with ice tea or other fruit juices as a mixed drink. If you like a warming hot drink on cold days, you can also warm the juice gently or infuse it with hot water or tea.
Can I give my child Aronia and if so, in what quantities?
There is nothing to prevent children from taking Aronia in any form. Slowly introduce your child to the flavour of the Aronia berry with small quantities. Our indulgence products, such as the Organic Aronia Fruit Bar, the Organic Aronia Jam Extra and the Organic Aronia Crunchy are an ideal and tasty portion of Aronia berries for both small and large Aronia fans.
This is entirely a matter of taste and you can decide according to your individual habits. For a daily sip of Aronia or a refreshing juice spritzer, Aronia juice is ideal. If you prefer muesli for breakfast or enjoy eating dried fruit, we recommend the dried Aronia berries. If you like to conjure up fresh smoothies and are open to creative recipe ideas, then you could choose the Aronia powder.
Is it enough if I drink Aronia juice, or should I combine it with other Aronia products?
Both our Aronia Juice and the dried berries are excellent for daily consumption. You should take about 100 ml organic Aronia juice pure or diluted, 1-2 tbsp dried Aronia berries, e.g. in muesli, or 2 tbsp organic Aronia powder in a smoothie. You could also make your own individual and creative Aronia portion from a variety of sources.
Direct juice, ‘motherjuice’, fruit juice, nectar. The differences between the different types lie in the fruit content and are laid down in the Fruit Juice and Soft Drinks Regulations.
‘Motherjuice’ and direct juice
The term “motherjuice” is also generally understood to mean direct juice, but only from the first pressing. This is a gentle juice production, as the fruits are only pressed once and not several times – comparable to high-quality oils from first pressing. ‘Motherjuice’ guarantees that as many of the ingredients of the fruits pressed into juice as possible end up in the glass.
Juice from fruit juice concentrate (aronia concentrate)
Also consists of 100% fruit, but is produced from fruit juice concentrate, i.e. the aronia fruit is pressed after harvesting and the juice is then reduced to aronia concentrate via vacuum. This process removes water and juice aroma. Due to lower transport volumes, larger quantities of concentrate can now be transported to the juice bottler regardless of the season. Water and natural flavouring substances are added to the concentrate on site.
Fruit and vegetables which are not suitable for direct juice due to their high acid content or unfavourable consistency (e.g. too much fruit flesh) are processed with sugar and water to produce ‘nectar’. Up to 20% sugar and between 25-50% water content may be added to a nectar according to law. This means a fruit content of only 50-75%.
Fruit juice drink
A drink called a “fruit juice drink” is more like a soft drink than a juice. Here the focus is no longer on the fruit: the fruit content needs only be between 5% and 30%, and is topped up with water and additives such as sugar or other sweeteners and flavourings that make up the majority of the taste.
Please note: All juices from Aronia ORIGINAL are direct juices and have ‘motherjuice’ quality!
Opened bottle of Aronia juice: After opening, store the bottles in the refrigerator and consume the juice within 10 days if possible. Please Note: ‘motherjuice’ should be protected from light and air to ensure the highest possible quality. We have had special light-protecting 0.7 litre amber glass bottles developed for our direct juices, that have lid head scoring on the screw cap. If the contents unexpectedly start to ferment, the pressure escapes through a membrane in the lid. Therefore, the danger of bursting glass bottles is reduced and you can immediately recognize if something is wrong by the curvature of the lid.
How long does the Aronia juice last in a 2-litre, 3-litre or 5-litre juice pack?
Do not be afraid of large quantities! In the practical juice pack with vacuum tap, the 100% direct juice can be kept for three months without refrigeration. The instructions for opening the box correctly are on the carton. Important: Do not turn the box backwards or upwards when opened – air could possibly get in and impair the quality of the juice. Pouring the juice into bottles also affects the shelf life. By the way, the 3-litre pack is ideal as a monthly ration for 100 ml of Aronia juice!
Tip: when the inner bag is almost empty, the carton should be tilted a little towards the tap. This prevents air from entering the bag when there is only little juice left in the bag.
All Aronia ORIGINAL products, which carry the Vegan Flower of the Vegan Society on the label, are vegan. No animal substances are used in our ingredients, the production process or in the packaging material.
The climate in Northern America offers optimal conditions for the Aronia berry but the berry can also get used to rough and cold weather if it needs to, as well as at altitudes of up to 1000 metres. However, a dry climate is unfavourable and in those cases, needs a lot of effort and care to achieve basic soil moisture.
From flowering to harvest: how does Aronia behave throughout the year?
From March onwards the first leaves of the Aronia plant start to sprout. From the end of April to May, the Aronia shows its white blossoms. The many small flower umbels delight garden lovers and bees alike. The first berries ripen from August to mid September, depending on the weather. The variety is also decisive for the yield: for a solid yield, the Aronia Nero Superberry is a good choice. From October onwards, the leaves turn a bright red colour and adorn the autumn garden. After shedding the leaves, the Aronia plant winters at temperatures as low as -35°C.
Which location should I choose for Aronia plants?
A sunny, bright planting location is ideal. Light and summer warmth support the budding of new branches and the formation of fructose in the Aronia berries. Partial shade is also possible, but the growth may be somewhat less in this area. The Aronia can cope well different weather. Planting too close to walls under trees should be avoided. Over the years, Aronia shrubs form strong roots with strong side shoots. A root depth of up to 2.00 m can also be achieved.
The ideal soil conditions for Aronia plants
In principle, Aronia plants can adapt to different soil conditions but rich mixed soils of sand & loam are ideal. A constant soil moisture content can also be beneficial. Dry or very calcareous soil conditions are not favourable and pure loam or sandy soils impede (inhibit) the growth of the plant.
When is the optimal planting time?
Aronia plants can be planted in spring – preferably before flowering in May – or in autumn. It is important that the soil is frost-free. September to early December is ideal. During the winter months the Aronia plant can get used to the new location and then sprout vigorously in spring.
That depends on how you want to integrate your Aronia into the garden. As a useful plant for a rich harvest, as an ornamental plant or as a hedge – all are possible. The Aronia is ideally suited as a useful plant in a solitary position. Here, the distance should be at least 0.80 m to 1.20 m.
Tip: You can choose a more generous spacing. This makes it all the more convenient for you to pick the berries later. For an Aronia hedge we recommend a distance of 0.40 m to 0.60 m, depending on how opaque the hedge is to be. Note that Aronia bushes lose their foliage in late autumn.
Is it possible to plant Aronia in a pot for balcony or terrace?
Of course! A pot made of ceramic or clay with a capacity of 20 litres or more is best, because Aronia has strong, vigorous roots. Proper watering is especially important here but not so much as to waterlog the plant. Fertilize only when necessary and choose a sunny location in any case.
Pruning the Aronia plant
When we deliver our Aronia plants to you, no pruning is necessary. It is advisable to prune in the first and second year after planting, so that the Aronia can sprout vigorously. Later, you won’t need to prune so much as the plant has a calm and even growth. In order to rejuvenate or thin out the shrub, isolated shoots can be pruned on the ground.
Tip: Always cut plants in late autumn at a leafless time. This allows the Aronia to sprout vigorously in spring. In the summer months, you might want to mark the shoots that you want to cut off due to low foliage or umbel formation.
How to water and fertilize properly
As a general rule, in hot periods the Aronia should be watered sufficiently, but take care to avoid waterlogging. Sandy soil dries out quickly, but is loose and permeable. Loamy soil can lead to stagnant moisture and a lack of air. Aronia plants are very frugal so you only need to use organic fertiliser when necessary. You should be careful with compost or manure as both can contain lime, which has a rather unfavourable effect. Bark mulch is not advisable either, as it can extract nitrogen from the soil. A good alternative is the addition of humus.
How do I recognize nutrient or water deficiency?
A nutrient deficiency first becomes apparent on the leaves of the plant: deficient leaves lack the juicy, lush green and are pale, light green to yellowish. The Aronia as a whole appears limp and weak. If there is a water deficiency, the plant will not form or shed all the subordinate parts such as the flower, umbel or berries. It can also affect the leaves making them colour and fall off too early.
I have no harvest: what can be the reason?
Even though Aronia plants are very robust, there is always a possibility that the harvest could be quite small or even completely fail. The following factors could be the reason:
• the wrong location – too little or no sun
• the weather – lots of rain + cold year
• the soil – too sandy or too loamy
• lack of nutrients (or too much fertilizer)
• the variety of Aronia
August to September is harvest time for the Aronia berry. The exact time depends on the altitude, weather and the number of hours of sunshine.
How I can tell if the Aronia berries are ripe: With a simple test – pick one or two berries from each of several cones and cut them in the middle with a sharp knife. If the berry is dark purple through to the middle, then it’s at ideal ripeness.
Help! The birds are eating away my ripe chokeberries!
Birds, especially blackbirds and starlings, are real Aronia gourmets. As soon as the first birds peck at your Aronia fruits, you can be sure: the Aronia berries have reached optimal ripeness.
Tip: Protect the plant with a bird net, for example. Important: it should be stretched to the ground to prevent birds from getting caught and injured. To create additional distance between the net and the shrub, wooden posts can be used to keep the dark fruits out of reach for animal visitors.
Some of our customers express concern that fresh Aronia berries contain a considerable amount of bound prussic acid (cyanide). Are Aronia berries poisonous?
Here is an all-clear: cyanide is only contained in the small seeds of the Aronia berry. In order to release them, a large number of them would have to be finely ground in the mouth. The prussic acid is broken down by heat treatment, e.g. in the production of juice or jam. According to the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), the daily limit is 75 micrograms of prussic acid per kilogram of body weight (ARfD). This means that an adult with a body weight of 70 kg can absorb up to 5.25 mg cyanide per day without any undesirable effects on health.
The kernels of 100 g of fresh Aronia berries contain about 0.6 to 1.2 mg bound prussic acid. An adult weighing 70 kg could therefore consume between 438 g and 875 g of fresh chokeberries per day (and chew the small seeds finely) without the prussic acid content being a cause for concern.
For comparison: The cyanide content of sweet apricot kernels, which are offered as a snack in many places, is on average 2.4 mg per 100 g (source: Max Rubner Institute)
So I can eat fresh berries?
Of course. Fresh Aronia berries can be eaten by young and old directly from the bush. Freshly nibbled in small quantities, mixed in a smoothie, made into homemade jam or as an ingredient for sweet cakes and desserts or savoury sauces and chutneys – fresh Aronia berries can be used in the kitchen in a versatile and creative way and the dark plant dyes will conjure up a bright violet in your food! Fresh Aronia berries have a sourish- tart taste and therefore harmonise both sweet and savoury cuisine.
Aronia plants can live between 35 and 50 years. A respectable age for a fertile plant! In Siberia there are plants which are said to have reached 60 years of age.
A vigorous plant, such as the Aronia Nero Superberry variety, can regularly bear berries for 25 to 30 years.
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If you have found a defect when unpacking your Aronia ORIGINAL products after purchase, please contact us online via the contact form or alternatively by e-mail to [email protected] Please let us know where and when you purchased the product. State your order number if you ordered from the J&J Aronia Online Shop, as well as your contact details.
Please have the package of damaged or spoiled goods ready. We will ask you for the product name, weight, batch number and/or best before date of the affected product. With this information you support our quality assurance. If you wish to make a complaint about the quality of the product, please keep it until further notice, if possible. Send us a photo if the defect is obvious (e.g. glass breakage, burst juice pack, etc.). Our customer service team will contact you immediately. Together we will find a solution!