Jamaica Cold Pressed Juice is the leading manufacturer and distributor of cold-pressed cane juice in the Caribbean, owned by British-Jamaican Toussaint Davy, who has been offering up a healthier alternative to the processed high sugar content juices available on the market. Having spent decades in the publishing and telecoms industry, Davy permanently moved to Jamaica in 2018 to work on building his wellness brand.
A maverick, Davy has created a distinctive formula of cold-pressed cane juice packed with a punch of antioxidants and immune-boosting benefits. By infusing local market flavours such as turmeric, tamarind, soursop, and beetroot among many other seasonal favourites, Davy has carved out a new healthy niche for a product as old as Jamaica itself.
Davy started cold-pressing cane juice back in the United Kingdom in 2012 when he discovered how much people enjoyed drinking the combination of refreshing and sweet taste and its long-term health benefits.
Similar to his namesake Toussaint L’Overture, the military leader responsible for the successful revolt of the enslaved in Haiti in 1791, Davy wants to change the juice industry from the bottom up. “After selling different Jamaican commodities: mainly our world-renowned Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee and Maypan coconuts – I realized I want to give a nod to my ancestors by revolutionizing the juice market. Being of Jamaican heritage, the negative association with the sugar industry, and its ties to slavery made me want to transform a problematic past into a positive future for generations to come. I have an overriding desire to destigmatize a plant that is integral to our past, is a part of our present, and could well play an important part in our future,” he reasons.
A history graduate of the London School of Economics, Davy spent many years studying the history of the slave trade, sugar, and how it affected the Caribbean, its legacy, and its generational effects from the eighteenth century to the present day.
“Make no mistake, our African ancestors came to the Caribbean under horrific conditions and often worked for eighteen hours a day, six days a week in the blistering sun, planting and reaping the sugar cane. They would have to carry it on their backs to mills where the juice was extracted,” he explains.
As a youngster, he fondly remembers enjoying cutting and eating raw sugarcane on his family’s land in Top Hill, St. Thomas. After selling cane juice at events in the United Kingdom for seven years as a side hustle he decided to take his business ‘back home’ by moving to Jamaica to develop the alternative sugarcane industry and its byproducts for export.
“ I started at a market stall on Brixton Station Road in London. Back then everyone thought I was crazy – importing cane at considerable cost from Jamaica and juicing it with a modified iron clothes mangle! But the customers kept coming. Soon, I was being asked to attend events such as the Notting Hill Carnival. With a growing corporate list including the Royal Academy, the Capital Hills Hotel Group, Hilton Hotels, local government associations, and Google UK among others, I knew I was onto something world-class and unique.”
Since then Jamaica Cold Pressed Juices has distributed cold-pressed cane juice to supermarkets island-wide and wellness establishments in the Kingston corporate area with an eye to expanding fully across the rest of the island. A subscription service is also afforded to loyal customers who stock up regularly.
“Sugarcane has loads of health benefits. It’s the best God-given substitute for processed sugar. As the Greeks reputedly said, sugarcane is “the reed that produces honey without bees,” remembers the history graduate.
He states, “My customers understand the benefits of drinking my formula of cold-pressed cane juice. Added to that a new blend containing turmeric aka ‘The Wellness Booster’, for these pandemic times and we’ve also seen an uptick in sales on Etsy and Amazon. Globally people are more aware of what they are consuming and are looking for healthier options over artificial sodas and juices with high sugar content and preservatives.”
He sells the cane juice online under the JamaicaDeli.com brand. With a stated intention of selling other bespoke Jamaican products under that umbrella, Davy sees only opportunity in setting up roots in Jamaica.
“There is so much room for growth and development here in Jamaica and I’ve been working steadily over the past few years to build up Jamaica Cold Pressed Juices’ distribution and marketing channels. The pandemic hasn’t deterred my growth. It has just allowed me to focus more on expanding the market share. If Jamaicans fully appreciated the commercial power of ‘Brand Jamaica’ internationally, the realisation would be transformative,” he says.
Benefits of drinking cold-pressed sugarcane juice
“We do not heat the juice, so we retain more of the nutrients and vitamins inherent within the produce. Added to that, we always put, as our colleague Dragon Dens’ Levi Roots suggests “music in our food” to ensure that every mouthful consumed is one of healthy pleasure. We find that playing Studio One and Treasure Isle timeless tunes in the production facility gives our beverages the Jamaican required stamp of approval,” Davy laughs.
Cold-pressed juice has been a growing movement first among fitness enthusiasts for many years. The cold-pressed juice market has grown exponentially as studies show that the market will grow to be valued at around USD$300million in the next five years as people have increased awareness of its health benefits, especially during these health-focused times.
So what are the benefits of drinking cold-pressed cane juice:
“Drinking cane juice can give you a shot of energy. The natural sugar in the juice is easily absorbed by the body and used to replenish sugar levels. And then when we run it through the automated press, it maximizes the juice content.” he explains. “It’s great for stamina and is essentially soluble fibre – the perfect pre-or post-workout beverage. All our juices contain sugarcane juice as their natural sweetener.” Davy explains.
“The natural sugarcane juice works effectively as an appetite suppressant, so a number of our customers use it as a dietary aid in their medically-sanctioned weight loss and wellness regimes. Whether you are a hardcore fitness junkie or couch potato, drinking cold-pressed juice is a perfect nature-rich reset solution,” adds Davy.
“Alongside the cold-pressed processing of the cane juice, we add seasonal fruits such as mango, soursop, beetroot, turmeric, ginger, and lime as well as cucumber, pine, kale, and carrot to make a healthy drink alternative. Other peer-reviewed benefits of drinking cane juice include helping in the prevention of heart disease and strokes by lowering harmful cholesterol and triglyceride levels,” he explains.
How Cold-Pressed juicing Works
Davy expands: “Our cold-pressed juice is prepared in bespoke hydraulic presses that apply great pressure to fresh fruits and vegetables to extract the maximum quantity of liquid.
There is no additional heat or oxygen utilized in the process, fewer nutrients are lost than in the heat of traditional centrifugal processing. Our cold-pressed, peeled cane juice in its unprocessed form has at least around a five to seven-day refrigerated shelf life before fermentation sets in. Pasteurisation or other methods such as HPP (high-pressure processing) are one way of extending its shelf life. The latter method is particularly effective in eliminating any bacteria. Using such a method, once processed, it is not uncommon to extend its shelf life for many months.”
About Jamaica Cold Press Juice’s Chief Juicing Officer
British-Jamaican Toussaint Davy is a London School of Economics and Birkbeck College, University of London graduate who started his career as a financial business analyst in the UK’s biggest water utilities company. He then spent over 15 years as a music magazine editor and publisher interviewing everyone from Beyonce to Jay-Z for corporate clients such as the BBC, the MOBO Organisation, and the Prince’s Trust. He transitioned to the telecoms industry in 2006 as a digital content and business development specialist for companies such as Vodafone and 3 Mobile before leaving corporate life to set up JamaicaDeli in 2012. He is now the Chief Juicing Officer of Jamaica Cold Press Juices with HQ in Downtown Kingston.
Jamaica Cold Press Cane Juices are sold in select HiLo Food Stores and Progressive Grocers supermarkets island-wide. Internationally sold on Amazon.com and Etsy platforms. Search ‘Jamaica Delicatessen’. To learn more, follow @jamaicacoldpress on IG.