What 100% Orange Juice Taught Me About Marketing

One morning I was watching figure “100%” in the side of an orange juice package. I started wondering why there’s 100% in the package. After all, the juice is made of juice concentrate. There’s water added, it’s not like it’s made 100% from oranges.

I came to conclusion that 100% in the package means absolutely nothing.

Nothing sensible anyway. Sure, you could think that there’s no apple or carrots in the juice so in that sense 100% of the fruits used are oranges – but basically that 100% figure is just sales talk.

I also remembered that when I was at store, I remember checking different juices and I remember thinking that 100% juice is good. I had no specific idea why it was good, but I suppose somehow my brain told me that “100% orange juice” is better than just “orange juice”. Now as I look back, I can see that the juices really don’t have difference. No added sugar or anything – the other just uses word “100%” to make me buy the darn juice.

Strange how you can generate different images by using different words – that’s something worth remembering when designing your product package.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. Found this page by gooling around while researching for an essay, and I am surprised to see such vague responses to such a significant story. 100% blah blah IS 100% DECEPTIVE!!! ALL JUICE IN ALMOST ALL STORES ARE FAKE. and how could you guys be so naive. To know if the juice is REAL juice just compare it with eating a REAL ORANGE. And yes, I am talking about Tropicana TOO. They just have enough money to convince people that they are 100% real by hiring the top notch scientists/experimenters and they have enuff money to create such a great marketing campaign and package design.
    Wake up guys. And remember, just like many other things that are coming to the light nowadays…as a poster hinted above, U WILL LOSE YOUR CUSTOMERS when the truth is finally told.

  2. I am from Germany and our packages also mention 100 % which has a reason. There are juices in supermakets which don’t have 100 % i.e. Nectar (min. 50%) but you are allowed to ad sugar or acid, juice drinks (about 10/12 % juice content) lemonades (about 2-4%). A 100 % Orange Juice must contain exactly the amount of Water and natural aromas which were evaporated during concentration process. 100 % is a quality parameter.

  3. Anyways…about water in juice…it’s a part of the juice in any sort of fruit -the water. It’s like saying ‘100% cucumber’ about a cucumber, when a cucumber ACTUALLY contains 90% (+/-) water and 10% cucumber. ;P I’
    m bored…Happy Caturday!

  4. Well, actually, Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice is _not_ made from concentrate, and has no added water so 100% pure actually apllies in that case. The others, not so much, like you said. ;-)

    Sad that I felt the need to defend my orange juice… I need to find a charity to devote my time to or something.

  5. Hah, I just caught part of the new TV show Mad Men, and instead of beer, it was cigarettes. Since all cigarettes are the same, in order to differentiate Lucky Strike from the competition, they would call attention to how they make the cigarettes. While all other cigarettes are poison, Lucky Strike cigarettes are toasted.

  6. I’m reading a book about persuasion and propaganda. How you say something affects how people think about things.

    Brand name aspirin will be advertised with “no other aspirin is stronger”. Well, aspirin is aspirin, regardless who the maker is. No other aspirin is stronger, but no other aspirin is weaker, either. The customer is expected to come to the conclusion that if no other aspirin is stronger, than this one must be the best.

    Growing up, I always wondered about the statement, “Made with 100% real fruit juice!” I can mix fruit juice with toilet water and claim that I made the new drink with 100% real fruit juice, right? B-)

    There isn’t anything deceptive about putting 100% on the side of the carton of OJ. It does, however, give the customer something to focus on. If this juice is 100%, what about others? If I market a car as having great fuel economy and follow it up with “21 MPG!”, which I personally don’t think is that great, what is the customer supposed to do? They might start thinking that 21 MPG is really good. That, I think, is deceptive.

    There was a beer company that was having trouble competing. A marketer visited the facility and took a tour. As the owner explained how they filtered and purified the beer, the marketer said that he needs to tell people. “Why? All beer companies do this.” “Yeah, but you’ll be the first person to tell them that you do it.” That company managed to become a major player in the field, all because it told people, “This is how WE do it.”, leaving the assumption that other beer companies do it not only differently but in an inferior way.

  7. Well, if you think about it, what comes out of the little box is orange juice right? Nothing else (except air). So, yeah, you could say that there is 100% orange juice in there, I honestly don’t expect wood to come out of it. Then again, every orange juice would be 100% (hopefully!).
    I mean, we don’t go “Oh, I’m drinking orange juice with water, sugar”.
    Still, it is a cheap trick, unless they want to mean that the juice is about as natural as it gets.

    I buy my orange juice based on the flavor and consistency (some of them use too much water), not on what is says on the little box.

  8. oh my god!
    so you think that an untrue product package should be used in order to improve sales?
    what are you trying to say?
    please clarify your position, otherwise we readers may think that you are a common salesman with no morality at all.
    i believe that marketing can be done in an “ethical way”, and that the customer’s trust is very hard to win, but also very hard to lose.
    i’m getting bored of those little tricks: personally i don’t buy anything without reading the ingredients, but you know, i’m european.

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