The commercial refrigeration sector faces its “largest change in living memory” due to a series of upcoming legislative changes.
That’s according to Hoshizaki, which has provided guidance on the latest developments ahead of World Refrigeration Day this Wednesday.
UK boss Simon Frost said that the majority of upcoming legislative changes within the commercial refrigeration centre around sustainability, protecting the environment and minimising global warming impact.
From 2020, for example, refrigeration manufacturers will be prohibited from using refrigerants with a Global Warming Potential (GWP) factor exceeding 2500.
“To put this change into perspective, many refrigeration and freezing installations currently use refrigerant R404 – which has a GWP factor of 3200 – making it well above the new limit,” he said.
Hoshizaki took the decision to begin phasing out Hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) units in January 2019, replacing them with significantly greener, Hydrocarbon (HC) models.
“These will be sold at a lower purchase price than the remaining HFC appliances in order to encourage operators to make the switch ahead of legislative changes in 2020,” added Mr Frost.
A change that is being implemented much sooner than 2020, which both manufacturers and operators must be aware of, is amendments to Energy Labelling, continued Mr Frost.
“From July 2019, energy labels will be changing from the current ‘A+++ to F’ categorisation, to ‘A+++ – E’, in order to further push manufacturers and operators towards a more sustainable refrigeration future.
“‘A+++’ represents the most efficient unit, ‘E’, the least. These ratings take into account factors such as energy consumption, storage volume, and whether or not the appliance has a freezer compartment etcetera.”
While these changes are important when making a purchase decision, Hoshizaki advises that operators take into account the unit’s climate class:
“Climate class readings detail the conditions by which an appliance has been tested, with climate class 1 being the lowest and climate class 5 being the highest. In order to run efficiently in a hot and humid professional kitchen, operators should be looking at a minimum of climate class 4 tested appliances (30°c ambient temperature and 55% relative humidity) or ideally the top-level climate class 5 (40°c ambient temperature and 40% relative humidity). This indicates that in a virtually tropical environment of a busy kitchen, units will still operate efficiently.”