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Retail Refrigeration

A Code of Conduct for Carbon Reduction in the Retail Sector

The Carbon Trust, in collaboration with the British Refrigeration Association (BRA) and the Institute of Refrigeration (IoR), have developed a voluntary Code of Conduct designed to help businesses work towards reducing carbon emissions in retail refrigeration used in grocery stores up and down the UK. The Code of Conduct was launched at the end of June 2011.

Earlier studies from the Carbon Trust indicated that commercial refrigeration in supermarkets and convenience stores accounts for a significant amount of CO2e annually to the UK’s greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint through direct and indirect carbon emissions. The objectives of the Code are:

  1. Develop best practice advice for carbon reduction in the retail refrigeration sector, in the form of a Code of Conduct written by industry, for industry.
  2. Provide, through the Code, a framework that encourages all parts of the sector to improve the energy efficiency, and reduce the carbon emissions of commercial refrigeration systems.
  3. Enable the refrigeration industry to demonstrate voluntary action to reduce carbon emissions through participation in, and endorsement of, the Code.

The Code has been written, with the support of the Carbon Trust, by industry stakeholders from the IOR and BRA who participated in working groups on the following topics:  

  • Training and skills
  • Containment
  • Buildings
  • Testing and inspection

These topics were prioritised for inclusion by the project steering group, and it is hoped that the Code may be expanded in future to include additional areas of interest. Download the Code of Conduct below: (pdf files)

Best Practices
Technical Specification


Retail Refrigeration Roadmap 

The result of a research and consultation exercise carried out by the Carbon Trust, the Retail Refrigeration Roadmap helps identify carbon saving technologies and their readiness for the Retail Refrigration Sector. Published by the Carbon Trust 2010 with input from BRA and IOR

Retail food outlets in the UK are responsible for around 3% of total electrical energy consumption and 1% of total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, with major retail food outlets alone responsible for around four million tonnes (Mt) of CO2e annually. A large proportion of these emissions can be attributed to refrigeration and, therefore, improving the efficiency and reducing emissions from refrigeration units could provide significant carbon savings.

The technologies included in the Refrigeration Road Map have been divided into three sub-groups:

  • Technologies currently available for retrofit in supermarkets
  • Technologies that could be installed during a store refit
  • Technologies that could be implemented in a new build supermarket.

Each technology has then been benchmarked against a baseline supermarket scenario to show its relative carbon saving potential. In addition, a number of potential future technologies have also been identified. These technologies are discussed within this report, but have not been evaluated for their CO2e saving potential as there is currently insufficient evidence to attribute carbon savings to them at this stage in their development.

Download the RoadMap here


Guide to Good Commercial Refrigeration Practice

We are delighted that this new edition of the Guide to Good Commercial Refrigeration Practice (2009) has been updated to reflect the many changes in the industry, not least the legislation affecting refrigerants, the increased demand for more energy efficient system and the increase in health and safety legislation that has a direct effect on all employees. The BRA and IOR have cooperated to produce this Guide, thus giving it the full endorsement of the main organizations representing the refrigeration sector.   We trust that you will find its content essential for your business. Published in 9 parts.

Free to download from the IOR publications area