The choices you face when it comes to smoothies

We pay a belated tribute to the mighty smoothie.

With recent temperatures being unseasonably high - even though Halloween is just around the cobweb-infested corner - we pay a belated tribute to the mighty smoothie.

Smoothies are available from any company that intends to make a profit during the summer months, but they might not be exactly what they say on the tin. For "tin", read "arty hipster blackboard".

If we use squash or cordial as a metaphor for smoothies, it's easy to explain the options available to you: the chains use Ribena, cafés use Sainsbury's double concentrate apple and blackcurrant squash, and independent coffee shops will know a guy who has a blackcurrant farm in Steyning.

The easiest way to judge which sort of smoothie you are about to receive is to see if the production process begins with the unscrewing of the concentrated smoothie mix bottle's lid. On the other hand, don't be alarmed if your order of a "fresh fruit" smoothie doesn't make the barista swing into action peeling and stoning mangoes.

Let's use another analogy in the form of peas: you buy them frozen because they taste just as good, but they don't take 20 minutes to prepare. You see where we're going with this?

When done right (like at ours) a smoothie can count as half of your five a day. When done badly (or cheaply), it can count as half of your recommended daily allowance for sugar.

The best way to deny that the change of seasons has begun, is to continue to consume iced drinks, keep your sunglasses on you, just in case, and stubbornly refuse to start using your heating until mid-November.