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ReaLemon logo.png
The logo of ReaLemon (2016)
ReaLime logo.png
The logo of ReaLime (2016)
Product type Reconstituted lemon juice from concentrate. ReaLime is reconstituted lime juice from concentrate.
Owner Mott's, part of the Dr Pepper Snapple Group
Introduced ReaLemon in 1934, ReaLime in 1944
Previous owners Irving Swartzburg (inventor), Borden, Eagle Family Foods

ReaLemon is a commercial brand of lemon juice that debuted in 1934, and is manufactured and marketed as of 2016 by Mott's, part of the Dr Pepper Snapple Group. ReaLime is a commercial brand of lime juice that debuted in 1944, is produced in the same manner as ReaLemon, and is also produced and marketed by Mott's.

Both ReaLemon and ReaLime are manufactured by reconstituting juice concentrate with filtered water to a natural strength. Irving Swartzburg invented the product and marketed it in 1934, and began to use the brand name "ReaLemon" in the early 1940s. In 1962, Borden purchased the rights to the ReaLemon brand in the United States from Swartzburg. Eagle Family Foods acquired the brand from Borden in 1998, and in 2001 Mott's acquired the brand.

Both products are used as an ingredient in various dishes, and ReaLemon is also used as an ingredient in some beverages. Both products also have some non-culinary uses.


ReaLemon was created in 1934 by Irving Swartzburg, who started the business by selling bottles of lemon juice from squeezed lemons to hotels, bars and other commercial customers.[1][2][3] The brand name "ReaLemon" began to be used in the early 1940s.[1] ReaLime is a brand of lime juice that is reconstituted from concentrate, which was introduced a decade after ReaLemon in 1944.[4]

The U.S. company Borden acquired the rights to the ReaLemon and ReaLime brands in the United States in 1962 when it purchased the ReaLemon-Puritan Company for around $12.4 million.[5] At this time, the ReaLemon brand had around a 90 percent market share of reconstituted lemon juice in the United States.[6][7] In early 1970, ReaLemon had a "92 percent share of the national processed lemon juice market" in the United States.[8] However, this market share reduced to 88 percent in August 1970 because of competitors entering into the national marketplace, particularly Golden Crown.[8]

After ReaLemon met with success in European markets, Borden introduced it into the United Kingdom in 1975, as a 250 ml bottle of lemon juice.[2] By 1980, ReaLemon comprised around 25% of the U.K. lemon juice market.[2] In response to this competition, Reckitt & Coleman, the producers of Jif lemon juice began producing Jif in 150 ml- and 250 ml-sized bottles.[2] Borden then began making plans to market ReaLemon in a lemon-shaped package that was similar to Jif's packaging.[2][9] This resulted in a lawsuit initiated by Reckitt & Coleman against Borden, alleging that ReaLemon copied Jif's packaging to mislead consumers by confusing their product with Jif.[2][9]

The case became known as "The Jif Lemon case", and was settled in 1990 in the Court of Appeal.[2] It was ruled that a sufficient public recognition of Jif's packaging was existent, which created an established reputation for the brand.[2] The ruling also stated that consumers would be "likely to believe that the ReaLemon was a Jif Lemon when they saw it on a supermarket shelf."[2] The ruling in Reckitt & Colman's favour occurred despite the fact that Reckitt & Colman did not register the plastic lemon packaging.[9]

Eagle Family Foods acquired the ReaLemon and ReaLime brands from Borden in 1998, and in 2001 Mott's, which at the time was a subsidiary of Cadbury Schweppes of London, and is now a part of The Dr Pepper Snapple Group, acquired the brands from Eagle Family Foods.[10][11][12][13][14] The total cost of the acquisition was around $128 million.[11][14] In 2001, both ReaLemon and ReaLime had a 48 percent market share in the lemon and lime juice categories, making them a market leader at this time.[11]


ReaLemon is prepared from lemon juice concentrate that is formulated at a controlled consistent strength, and after the addition of water, the end-product is a 100% lemon juice product.[3][15] When bottled, filtered water is used and the product is reconstituted to the strength of natural lemon juice.[15] RealLemon and ReaLime are presently manufactured (as of 2016) and marketed by Mott's.[6][8][10]

Both brands are packaged and marketed in distinctive packaging.[16][17] ReaLemon is packaged in plastic bottles that includes the shape and color of a lemon atop the bottle, and is packaged using a yellow-colored cap.[10] ReaLime is packaged in the same bottle style that includes the shape and color of a lime atop the bottle, and is packaged with a green-colored cap.[18] ReaLemon has also been packaged in the United States in smaller squeeze pack plastic containers that are shaped and colored as that of a whole lemon.[3][19] ReaLemon is also packaged in single-serving packets.[20]

In July 2012, the United States Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group regarding HAACP (hazard analysis and critical control points) violations that were found at a processing plant in Irving, Texas.[21] FDA found that lemon and lime juice was held in unsanitary conditions, which was a potential health threat to consumers.[21] Company managers were advised by FDA that a reduction in microorganism levels was necessary to protect consumers.[21]


Culinary uses[edit]

Two to three tablespoons of ReaLemon lemon juice has the equivalent of the juice from one average-sized lemon.[15] Both ReaLemon and ReaLime are used as ingredients in various recipes,[22][23] such as in baking, grilling, and as an ingredient in marinades and salad dressings.[14] ReaLemon can be used as an ingredient in hot tea, lemonade and hot lemonade, and in various cooked dishes and baked goods such as pies.[24][25][3] ReaLemon and other lemon juices can be used to prevent browning discoloration from occurring in peeled or sliced potatoes.[26] This is performed by soaking the sliced potatoes in a mixture of the lemon juice and water.[26] Both ReaLemon and ReaLime must be refrigerated after the bottles are opened.[4]

Other uses[edit]

ReaLemon and other lemon juices can be used as a household deodorizer and cleaner, which is effective per the highly acidic content of lemon juice.[3][27] ReaLime can be used topically as a remedy to whiten yellowing fingernails by soaking one's fingernails in a mixture of ReaLime, salt and warm water for ten minutes.[28]

See also[edit]

  • Jif – a brand of lemon juice prepared using reconstituted lemon juice concentrate


  1. ^ a b Schwartz, Louis B.; Flynnm, John Joseph; First, Harry (1983). "Problems in Antitrust". Foundation Press, Incorporated. p. 5. Retrieved 19 April 2016.  (subscription required)
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Jif Lemon". Marketing. February 22, 2012. Retrieved 13 December 2015.  (subscription required)
  3. ^ a b c d e Hickman, Matt (February 15, 2010). "Back to basics: ReaLemon". Mother Nature Network. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b Party Line. p. 167. ISBN 978-0-9794477-0-9. 
  5. ^ The Federal Reporter. West Publishing Company. 1982. p. 505. Sometime in the 1940's the ReaLemon trademark was developed and used for the reconstituted lemon juice product. At that time ... Borden purchased the ReaLemon-Puritan Company in 1962 for approximately $12.4 million. Borden has ... 
  6. ^ a b Associated Press (March 22, 1977). "'The ReaLemon Case Gets More Fascinating'". The Argus-Press. Retrieved 19 April 2016. 
  7. ^ McChesney, F.S.; Shughart, W.F. (1995). The Causes and Consequences of Antitrust: The Public-Choice Perspective. University of Chicago Press. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-226-55635-2. 
  8. ^ a b c "International Journal of Advertising". Volumes 3-4. Holt, Rinehart and Winston. 1984. pp. 290–292. Retrieved 19 April 2016.  (subscription required)
  9. ^ a b c "History of the world in 52 packs – Jif lemon". Sun Branding Solutions. Retrieved December 13, 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c "ReaLemon". Dr Pepper Snapple Group. Retrieved 19 April 2016. 
  11. ^ a b c "ReaLemon, ReaLime of Seneca County sold to Mott's". Buffalo Business Journal. August 13, 2001. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  12. ^ "Eagle Family Foods sells ReaLemon, ReaLime brands to Mott's". Columbus Business Journal. August 13, 2001. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  13. ^ Elkins, Ashley (July 1, 2005). "Starkville milk plant to shut down at the end of the year". Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  14. ^ a b c Associated Press (August 15, 2001). "Company News; Mott's Plans to buy the ReaLemon and ReaLime brands". The New York Times. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  15. ^ a b c Drake, Jean (August 23, 1988). "Thin Pan Burns Cookies". The Bulletin. Retrieved 19 April 2016. 
  16. ^ Evans, Joel R.; Berman, Barry (1990). "Marketing". Macmillan Pub. Co. p. 271. Retrieved 5 July 2016. Figure 11-10 shows the creative packaging used by ReaLemon.  (subscription required)
  17. ^ "Food Production Management". Volumes 124-125. Canning Trade. 2001. p. 51. Retrieved 5 July 2016. 
  18. ^ "ReaLime Juice". Dr Pepper Snapple Group. Retrieved 19 April 2016. 
  19. ^ Leblang, Bonnie Tandy; Wyman, Carolyn (September 28, 2005). "Supermarket samplet: You'll want first Dibs on snack". Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  20. ^ "White Pig Inn". Arkansas Business. March 13, 1995. Retrieved July 5, 2016. ... other complaint was that lemon for our tea came in those irksome little ReaLemon packets instead of wedges of real lemon. 
  21. ^ a b c Bouckley, Ben (October 3, 2012). "FDA warns Dr Pepper Snapple bottler over 'serious' HACCP failings". Retrieved April 19, 2016. 
  22. ^ Smothermon, C. (2000). Real Lemon Easy Cooking with Zing: 90 Recipes Bursting with Fresh Flavor. Better homes and gardens test kitchens. Meredith Books. ISBN 978-0-696-21113-3. 
  23. ^ Borden, Inc (1983). That Lively Lime Twist: Recipes with the Real Difference of Realime Lime Juice from Concentrate. Borden Incorporated, Borden Consumer Products Division. 
  24. ^ "Today's Health". American Medical Association. 1958. p. 54. Retrieved 5 July 2016. Hot tea sparked up with reaLemon is another cold weather favorite. Keep a bottle of reaLemon on the pantry shelf for hot lemonades, lemon and soda and for all your cooking and baking needs, too. reaLemon is Reconstituted for Uniform ... 
  25. ^ Knapp, Louisa; Bok, Edward William (1992). "(Unaccessible)". Volume 109. The Ladies' Home Journal. p. 86. Retrieved 5 July 2016. Stir in ReaLemon* brand and vanilla. Pour into prepared crust. Chill 3 hours or until set. Top with cherry pie filling before serving. 
  26. ^ a b Green, J. (2012). Joey Green's Kitchen Magic: 1,882 Quick Cooking Tricks, Cleaning Hints, and Kitchen Remedies Using Your Favorite Brand-Name Products. Rodale. p. 234. ISBN 978-1-60961-712-7. 
  27. ^ "Weird Cleaning Uses For Brand-Name Products". CBS Los Angeles. August 31, 2010. Retrieved July 5, 2016. 
  28. ^ Green, J. (2010). Joey Green's Cleaning Magic: 2,336 Ingenious Cleanups Using Brand-Name Products. Rodale. p. 142. ISBN 978-1-60529-101-7. 

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