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Where does the name Ribena come from?

The name Ribena comes from the Latin for blackcurrants – “Ribes Negrum”

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When was Ribena first launched?

The Ribena brand name was first used in 1938.

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What is the history of Ribena?

Ribena was invented in Long Aston by Dr Vernon Charley, at H.W. Carter & Co, which manufactured a wide variety of solid and liquid foodstuffs. The blackcurrant syrup produced remained naturally high in vitamin C and this was sold on a specific nutritional basis through hospitals and maternity homes. The Ribena brand name was first used in 1938, and comes from the Latin name for blackcurrant: ‘Ribes Negrum’. 

During the war, the firm was responsible for practically all the quantities of blackcurrant syrup (based on the Ribena product) produced for free distribution to children by the Ministry of Food. This was followed in 1941 by the commercial development of a high Vitamin C rosehip syrup for which the original process had again been provided by the Long Ashton workers. In 1944, the Ministry of Food allowed the firm to revert to the sale of Ribena under its own name, and very rapid developments then took place, especially in the expansion of the contract system of growing blackcurrants for processing. 

After the war the decision to build a new factory was inevitable due to bomb damage to the Bristol factory and increased demand for Ribena. Again Carter's found themselves an instrument of Government policy as the new factory had to fit in with official plans for the location of industry. A site at Coleford in the Forest of Dean was eventually chosen. Building work commenced in the spring of 1946. In the autumn of 1947 the new factory went into limited production and Ribena continues to be produced on this site to this day. In 1955 the business was acquired by Beecham Foods Limited, part of the Beecham Group of companies, which later went on to become part of GlaxoSmithKline. 

The drink has seen many changes since the days of a war-time tonic. It was the first major brand to be available in ready-to-drink cartons in 1982, and extensions including sparkling and ‘no added sugar’ versions have catered for the public’s ever-developing taste buds.

In January 2014, Ribena was sold to Lucozade Ribena Suntory Limited.

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Does Ribena only come in blackcurrant flavour?

Ribena comes in a large range of flavours. Please visit our website www.ribena.co.uk for up-to-date information on our product portfolio.

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Does Ribena have artificial colours added to it?

Ribena does not have artificial colours added to it.

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Does Ribena contain any alcohol?

We do not add alcohol to our products as an ingredient, but there may be very low levels present in our products as alcohol is present as part of some of the flavourings used in our products. Alcohol is defined as ethyl alcohol or ethanol.  We are advised by International Trade Federations that products cannot be claimed to be alcohol free as natural fruit flavours and fruit juices may contain naturally occurring alcohol.

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What are anthocyanins and why are they used?

Anthocyanins are a food colour sourced from red grape skins and are used to give consistent colour to our products. Blackcurrant Juice varies in colour naturally so the addition of anthocyanins provides a consistent colour to the product every time you buy it.

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What does dilution mean and how much concentrate should I use?

Dilution or Dilute means to add water, to water down or dilute a more concentrated liquid to a more dilute one. Ribena Concentrates are sold as a concentrated squash, which is diluted by the consumer at the point of use at home by the consumer. On pack we recommend that the concentrate is diluted 1 part (50ml) concentrate to 4 parts (200ml) water.

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Does Ribena count as one of your 5 a day?

We do not make any claim that Ribena Original or Ribena No Added Sugar can count as 1 of your 5 a day.  These Ribena variants do not count as 1 of your 5 a day no matter how much you consume. Ribena should not be used to replace other nutrients in the diet such as fruit and vegetables which have a broader nutritional value. For more information on what does and doesn’t count as part of your 5 a day, please visit http://www.nhs.uk/LiveWell/5ADAY

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What is the RDA for Vitamin C and is Ribena a safe source?

The Recommended Daily allowance (RDA) for Vitamin C is set at 80mg per day. Each serving of Ribena provides at least 80mg of Vitamin C, providing 100% of your RDA for Vitamin C. The serve size does vary with pack size, so please check the back of pack for the serve size on the pack that you have.

Ribena is suitable for consumption by all healthy adults as part of a varied and well balanced diet and lifestyle, unless contra-indicated or otherwise recommended by a health care professional. Ribena should not, however, be used to replace other foods in the diet such as fruit and vegetables, starchy carbohydrates, meat and fish and milk and dairy foods which have a broader nutritional value and contribute to overall health and wellbeing.

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How much Ribena can I drink during the day?

Ribena is suitable for consumption by all healthy adults as part of a varied and well balanced diet and lifestyle, unless contra-indicated or otherwise recommended by a health care professional. Ribena should not, however, be used to replace other foods in the diet such as fruit and vegetables, starchy carbohydrates, meat and fish and milk and dairy foods which have a broader nutritional value and contribute to overall health and wellbeing.

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Does Ribena contain any gluten?

We do not use any ingredients which contain gluten in our Ribena and Ribena Plus products.

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Is Ribena suitable for vegetarians?

All our Ribena Original, Ribena Light and Ribena Plus products are suitable for vegetarians.

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What are the health benefits of Vitamin C?

Vitamin C has a number of health benefits.  It helps with the normal function of the immune system, supports normal healthy bones AND protects cells from oxidative stress.

Vitamin C also increases non-haem iron absorption and contributes to the normal functions of the nervous and immune systems.   

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Consuming Ribena Plus which contains Vitamin A during pregnancy?

Ribena Plus for immunity support provides vitamins A, C and E. Each serving provides 100% of the Recommend Daily Allowance (RDA) of vitamin C, as well as 15% of the RDA’s for vitamins A and E. Current government recommendations, are to avoid high dose supplements containing vitamin A during pregnancy. The levels in Ribena Plus are low doses and it is clearly labelled on front of pack that it contains vitamin A so the consumer can make their own judgement as to whether they want to consume it or not as part of a balanced diet. 

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What type of sugar is used in Ribena Full Sugar?

The sugars found in Ribena Blackcurrant Juice Drink Concentrate are sucrose and fructose. Sucrose (often referred to as sugar or table sugar) is added to sweeten the product. Fructose is naturally occurring from the blackcurrant concentrate used to make the product.

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Does Ribena contain artificial sweeteners?

Ribena’s No Added Sugar range (including Ribena Plus) uses sweeteners in small amounts, this enables sweetness to be added without extra calories.

We are committed to playing our part in helping consumers to make positive choices when it comes to their beverage consumption.  That is why Ribena has an portfolio that offers choice with the range including both full sugar and no added sugar products in a variety of flavours.  Ribena original contains no artificial sweeteners, colours or flavours.

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So what do we mean when we say 'You Can't Get Any More Ribenary'?

For many, it can be hard-to-describe the fruity taste of Ribena; its unique, its bold and distinctive, it’s a real flavour that’s rich and unmistakeably fruity – people we’ve spoken to have found it hard to put their finger on it, will many just describing it as ……well…. very Ribenary. And that nothing tastes more Ribenary, than Ribena itself. 

We’ve taken the idea of Ribena being “Ribenary” and are using our TV advert to create a feast for people’s eyes with lots and lots of visual elements, to try and express what the Ribena tastes is like - a Ribenary moment is bold, colourful and very fruity. The advert is also a celebration of Ribena’s upbeat and playful personality, because with Ribena you get a great fruit taste, but also an uplifting fun feeling too.