SENSE - Life cycle assessment of orange juice

Posted by Quentin Bezier
Author : Niels Jungbluth
Full LCA available on the web
Publication year: 
Food, Plants
Orange juice
Quality and sources
Is the study a: 
Detailed LCA
Was a critical review performed?: 
Sponsor name(s): 
SENSE - HarmoniSed Environmental Sustainability in the European food and drink chain
Sponsor type: 
Union, Federation
Niels Jungbluth - ESU Services
Practitioner(s) type: 
Functional unit: 
One litre of NFC orange juice in 1.0 l PET bottle, one-way, at bottling plant
Goal and scope of the summary: 
"The object of investigation of this case study is a cradle-to-gate life cycle assessment of the production of Not-From-Concentrate (NFC) orange juice produced in Spain."

"The global warming potential (GWP) calculated for 1 l orange juice packed in a 1.0 l PET bottle is 0.67 kg CO2-eq. This is quite low compared to literature data. The impact assessment of the NFC orange juice shows that the main life cycle step depends on the impact categories assessed. About 50% of the climate change and abiotic resource depletion are due to the bottling process. The impact categories land use, water depletion and freshwater ecotoxicity are dominated by the orange cultivation (more than 95 %). The orange cultivation contributes around 50 % to the acidification and freshwater eutrophication. The four main contributors to the orange cultivation are the electricity use for the irrigation, the N-fertiliser and P2O5-fertiliser use and the production and application of pesticides. The most relevant processes for the juice pressing are the electricity use and thermal energy use. The main contributor to the bottling process is the manufacture of the PET bottle."


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