What’s New For Low Speed Masticating Juicers In 2018?
It’s a while since we published our definitive piece about the best performing slow juicers on the market, so we thought it about time to update our customers with our premium choices for the summer of 2018.
If you want to skip the TL;DR, these juicers below are the equal best performers in 2018 and we’ll go into further details about the subtler differences between the models in the rest of the article:
South Korea continues to squeeze out the rest of the world in cold press masticating juicer technology, with two factories still clearly standing out in terms of overall juicer performance, just as China continues to lead the world in producing second rate imitations of this juicer format. Nothing has changed there then. The Korean examples do come at a significantly higher price but there is no doubt that this is more than recouped over the life of the juicer when you take into account the cost of wasted ingredients with their Chinese counterparts. For our money, the Chinese options are still very overpriced for what you get – what you usually get is more pulp dumped into your juice, which may give the false impression of high juice yields. But we don’t like sludgy juice. So how can you tell which masticating juicers are likely to underperform? At the moment there are only a few brands available in the UK which originate from the worlds leading manufacturers, so by process of elimination you can more or less assume that all the rest are from China and therefore generally offer inferior performance.
The best slow juicer technology for 2018 continues to be found in the ranges offered by Kuvings, Omega, Sana (an offshoot of the Omega brand) and Hurom. Omega has models from both of the leading factories, while Kuvings and Hurom are both brands from single factories. In our range we stock the Omega and Sana badged versions of Hurom slow juicers, and the full range from the Kuvings factory.
Confused? There’s no need to be because in terms of juicing performance the top of the range models from both factories are neck and neck. That means they all give almost identical very high juice yields, with almost no pulp getting through into the juice jug. So how do you choose? Well, there are slight differences in features and juicing styles that we went into last time, with a few new upgrades for 2018.
Since we last wrote about this topic, the actual end results from the best available slow juicers haven’t really moved on. In other words there have been no changes to the maximum amount of juice you get from your ingredients and we think this could be because the design limits of this juicer format have been reached. So what we are seeing are incremental improvements in the experience of living with these juicers as the different brands try to win us over. Some of these improvements are genuine, while some others clearly look like gimmicks.
In the race for new features Hurom have now produced a model that ‘self-feeds’ with a chopping blade contraption above the juicing parts replacing the standard feed chute. We think this feature is an example of designers ‘jumping the shark’ to produce an innovation that offers little or no advantage. First of all you still have to prep the ingredients for this ‘chopper hopper’ in any case, and for our money this system is inferior to standard feed chutes when it comes to juicing health promoting leafy green ingredients. But other juicer design changes do offer genuine functional advantages, like the new safety conscious ‘flip gate lid’ available in the 2018 Kuvings range.
Extra large feed chutes on vertical slow juicers (also known as cold press juicers) were invented by the Kuvings factory and a version of this was available on one of last years winners, the Omega MMV. This large feed chute is one of the most plagiarised technologies found in Chinese slow juicers and in our experience you’ll do well to avoid all the examples from the land of copy products. The Kuvings versions are far superior and for many people this bigger feed option has become a must have feature on any juicer. While offering the greater convenience of reduced chopping of ingredients – with apples being able to be juiced whole – the straight versions of these larger chutes had to pass safety standards because they were wide enough for small hands. This meant that to avoid the possibility of injury the factories had to partly block the feed tube at the bottom with a protruding fin. This in turn meant that feeding whole apples required a firm push past this fin to get the fruit into the juicing mechanism (smaller ingredients could fall either side of the protrusion). The concept of the ‘self-feeding’ nature of vertical single auger juicers was slightly compromised by this, so Kuvings came up with the ‘flip gate lid’ concept.
The ‘flip gate’ is a hinged lid in the top of the feed chute that can swing ingredients – including whole fruit – down into the feed tube, while preventing fingers or hands getting anywhere near the business end of the juicing auger. This ingenious solution gets rid of the need for the fin in the bottom of the chute and almost all ingredients will easily self feed as they fall into the top of the juicer. For lighter ingredients like leafy greens that need a bit more help than gravity alone, you still get an integrated standard feed chute and food pusher too, offering the best of both worlds. Apart from offering this snazzy new feature, the new flagship EVO820 model from Kuvings also has a radically different style, with a leather look textured finish to the motor base and a range of new colour options. So if we had to name an outright winner of the title of Best Slow Juicer for 2018, we’d say the Kuvings EVO820 ticks all the right boxes. If that’s a little too expensive for your taste, then for very little compromise you will still get the same juicing performance from the older style large feed chute options in the Omega MMV and Kuvings C9500, and from the old favourite smaller feed versions from Omega and Sana. If you like the flip gate lid idea Kuvings also have it available on their more affordable B8200 rang.This deploys their earlier juicing technology which still offers a very strong performance. If you’re still undecided, we discussed the other nuances of small versus large feeds and more in our other Best Slow Juicer article here which you might find helpful. Happy juicing!