Spain has banned the adding of sugar to fruit juices and nectars.

The move, which is in line with the European Union (EU) juices directive 2012/12/EU, comes into effect on 28 October. New rules for making, labelling, presenting and advertising juices and similar products also require identifying the amount of individual juices within mixtures.

Juan Ramón Ugarte, president of the Spanish Juice Manufacturers' Association (Asozumos) and MD of Juver Alimentación, Spain’s leading juices and nectars manufacturer, said this week that the ban presents both a challenge and an opportunity for the category.

“It will force (the industry) to work harder to stand out as processors of food of the highest quality,” he added.

Products made before the end of October can be sold under existing rules until 28 April, 2015. Manufacturers can then continue using ‘no sugar added’ labels until 28 October, 2016.