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A petition on fair payment and retentions will be delivered to UK prime minister Theresa May later this month by Peter Aldous MP and a delegation of industry leaders.

BESA and ECA, who are coordinating the presentation on April 23 comes just four days before the second reading of the Aldous Bill, which proposes cash retentions owed to suppliers should be held in trust accounts.

The group of industry leaders presenting the petition includes the National Federation of Self Employed & Small Businesses national chair Mike Cherry, Federation of Master Builders chief executive Brian Berry, director general of the Institute of Directors Stephen Martin, ECA CEO Steve Bratt and BESA CEO David Frise.

“This represents a tremendous show of support from industry and MPs,” commented BESA’s David Frise. “At its best, the industry can deliver a first-class built environment, but cash retentions impact every one of the 330,000 SMEs and sole traders represented in this petition. We need reform now and the proposal to hold cash retentions in trust will be a start to demonstrate lessons have been learned from Carillion.”

Payment abuse has climbed up the political agenda since construction giant Carillion collapsed just six days after the first reading of the Aldous Bill, leaving many SMEs owed huge sums of money. Had retentions owed by Carillion to suppliers been held in trust, this money could have been recovered.


Source: Cooling Post


Did you or anyone you know study the refrigeration engineer course at Eastleigh Technical College in the late 1970s? If so, BBC Radio Four is eager to contact you.

Paula McGinley is producing a new series for BBC Radio Four which traces a group of people who studied together at some point in their lives and then went their separate ways. The series will look at the twists and turns that take people from the same starting point in different directions.



The programme's researchers are already in contact with two individuals, Nick Petford and John Russell-Sanders, who attended the Refrigeration Engineering course at Eastleigh Technical College between 1978-79. If you attended the same course at around the same time, the BBC would love to hear from you!

Email or call 020 7765 5073.



The next IoR Cool Talks breakfast will be hosted by Dean & Wood at it's Leeds Head Office on Thursday 26th April.

They'll be serving coffee/tea and breakfast rolls on arrival! The free events will include a variety of talks on a diverse range of industry topics. Andy Kemecsei of Martindale Electrical will open talks with a discussion on electrical safe working. They'll also be talks held from Neil Roberts of Chemours on the options for replacing R404A. Steve Taliadoros of LU-VE will end the session with a talk on unit cooers and cold rooms.

The event begins at 8.30am on Thursday 26th April, ending at around 10.30am.

Further information and joining details can be found here.

There are huge growing concerns the UK is being a hub for the sales of refrigerant in disposable cylinders, an illegal container that has been banned for use within Europe for over 10 years. With growing evidence of contractors and engineers being contacted with offers of refrigerant, including R410A and R404A in illegal disposable cylinders, a quick search on eBay reveals vendors offering R404A in disposables. Some of which are also the source of listings on other sites including Ireland & France.

Since pressure from the industry, eBay has deleted some of the items insisting that any listings that don’t comply with its policies will be removed.

All the suspect listings are using images of disposable cylinders and others clearly state in the product descriptions that the refrigerant will be provided within these illegal disposables. It is still not known whether the product is being imported from outside of the quota system, however, it is clearly avoiding UK customs inspections and policing by the Environmental Agency.

With the huge increases in the price of high GWP refrigerants in the UK and Europe, the market has seen some individuals seeking alternative sources for the gas, and with the lack of policing of the F-gas regulations is presenting them with the opportunity to make large profits.

Established refrigerant suppliers are raising concerns about the purity of some of this refrigerant and its effects on both system efficiencies and reliability. Of much greater concern is that the current high refrigerant prices might encourage a reappearance of dangerous counterfeits with caused a number of deaths in 2011. Some of the illegal refrigerants now removed from eBays UK marketplace also included the CFC’s R12 and R502 from a source in the USA.

Swedish Refrigeration group Beijer Ref AB have officially formed a joint venture with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to market MHI air conditioners throughout the UK and Ireland. Beijer Ref is the majority owner of the joint venture, which will be named 3D Plus. The joint venture is an outcome of Beijer Ref's strategy to work closely with its main suppliers.

“The UK and Ireland markets are important to us and we continuously look at different ways of growing our market share with key partners,” commented Beijer Ref CEO Per Bertland. “The technical expertise of MHI, and the distribution expertise of Beijer Ref, will be integrated to have a broader and more complete offering to the customers through this joint venture.”

The 3D Plus name recalls the former MHI distributor 3D Air Conditioning, which became part of the HRP group in 2004. In 2017 MHI spilt from it's UK distributor AMP following the purchase by Panasonic, a rival air conditioning manufacturer, which left Beijer Ref company HRP as the sole UK distributor for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

“Partnering with MHI on an exclusive basis will strengthen HRP’s position whilst 3D Plus will complement it by opening new doors,” commented Beijer Ref UK and Ireland MD John Billson.

Billson confirmed that 3D Plus will be run as a separate company from the South of England. Personnel have yet to be confirmed, but Beijer Ref is currently in the process of appointing a general manager.

“MHIAE and Beijer Ref have had a successful relationship collaborating in the Scandinavian market for many years,” revealed MHIAE managing director Masayuki Fujinami. “Through the formation of this joint venture, we are happy to be moving beyond a traditional manufacturer and distributor relationship and to joining our two companies together in a way that will allow us to harness our respective expertise and experience jointly.”

“It is our intention that 3D Plus will quickly become a similar size business to other Beijer Ref distribution channels in the UK,” added Per Bertrand. The MHI brand already has a strong market position which is a great platform for future growth. This joint venture further strengthens our partnership and we look forward to seeing the progress of 3D Plus.”

Bitzer has announced details of a new high-efficiency scroll compressor for air conditioning and HVAC applications.

At last month's Mostra Convego exhibition, Bitzer showcase the new Orbit+ models based on Bitzer’s currently available Orbit 6 and 8 series. These new units are equipped with a line start permanent magnet motor and improve the seasonal performance (SEER/IPLV) by up to 8% while also increasing cooling capacity by up to 5%.

The Orbit+ compressors can replace or be combined with standard Orbit models without redesigning the system significantly. The tandem and trio combinations are easily tailored towards system capacity and efficiency targets according to annual load characteristics and the customers’ specific needs. For even better capacity modulation, customers can add a frequency inverter like the Bitzer Varipack.

The Bitzer Orbit models recently introduced low-GWP A2L refrigerants, such as R454B and R452B and are designed to work with R410A. Similar to the Orbit 6 and 8 series that have already been introduced, the new Orbit+ models are able to operate with a frequency inverter at 35 to 75Hz while performing with a low sound level and low oil carry-over rate.

The compressors are interchangeable, which Bitzer says allows systems designers and manufacturers to simplify development work by using existing frameworks, footprints, piping layouts and manufacturing processes.

Bitzer has said they are easy to install, offer high energy efficiency when fully or partially loaded and have the lowest noise emissions in their capacity class. Energy consumption is extremely low, especially at low condensing temperatures, says Bitzer, where the Orbit Boreal series can be applied.


UK:  In the words of Michael Caine in The Italian Job, we don't think the phrase 'you're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off' is what one Supermarket had in mind when a catastrophic failure of a Co2 refrigeration system occurred in one of their stores earlier this month.

Now a lot of engineers can be intimidated by CO2, and having seen these images I can probably understand why. And although these occurrences are extremely rare there are hazards that operatives should be aware of when working with high-pressure transcritical Co2 systems. I would guess this particular incident was a result of a manufacturing defect or pressure relief valve failure. Nevertheless, it could have resulted in a very serious injury or worse should someone have been in the vicinity at the time.

A recent post a saw on LinkedIn - What caused this? - When CO2 Goes wrong!! asked the question ‘could this be a lack of Operator / Engineer training’. Well without having the facts and not wishing to speculate, this does however pose a very poignant question. Should being in possession of a refrigerant handling (F-Gas) certificate qualify you to work with Co2 or indeed flammable refrigerants?

Time for mandatory regulation?

According to recent statistics released by the Environmental Agency there are now over 36,000 UK engineers that are F-Gas certified, any of which without having to have had any additional training, are deemed qualified to work with Co2 and flammable-based refrigeration and air conditioning systems.

With these new refrigerants now set to dominate the marketplace and the additional risks involved, I believe there is now a strong case for the industry to become better regulated and for engineers that are being requested to work on these systems to have received the necessary training through a recognised scheme, a similar way in which the Gas Safe scheme is operated.

This said and done I don’t see this will happen anytime soon if at all. In the meantime it’s left to the employer to ensure they fulfil their duty of care and provide adequate training in the safe operation and hazards involved when working with these refrigerants, for the health and safety of their employees.

Watch the Videos showing the aftermath - Transcritical Co2 refrigeration pack EXPLODED!!

Related Articles:

Emerson Climate Technologies - CO2 as a Refrigerant — Five Potential Hazards of R744


Grow your refrigeration and air conditioning business with fridgehub

Marc Evans, CEO, The Sure Chill Company: For manufacturers of soft and alcoholic drinks, ensuring that their products are delivered to the consumer at the right temperature is a vital brand component. Those droplets of condensation running down the outside of a can or bottle indicate that a premium drink delivers on its promise to provide real refreshment. It is an essential part of the experience which sells the aspirations around the brand, from being able to have the best spontaneous night ever through to having a fun time with friends. In short, if the drink isn't properly chilled, then it's not worth having.

This association between brand and temperature is a partnership that has been formed over a long period of time.  And up until now this relationship has lasted well. Whilst there has been a need to innovate with clever marketing and diversify into new markets – such as catering for the more health conscious – in the developed world the beverage industry has witnessed roaring success. Yet at the same time, the market is also extremely crowded and opportunities for sustainable long-term revenue increases are few and far between. Despite its best efforts, the sector has crashed into a revenue brick wall.

Other avenues to explore

For a long time, beverage brands have been trying to break into new and emerging markets in developing countries such as Africa, India and South America. Rising populations and confident economies mean that disposable incomes are on the rise. India is of particular interest to beverage companies. Not only has household disposable income doubled since 1985, but it is also estimated to be the fifth largest consumer market by 2025, thanks in part to the emergence and rapid growth of a new middle class. This opens up a whole host of new opportunities for the sector to take their brands to new generations and to build long-term consumer loyalty.

And it is a prospect that hasn't gone unnoticed by some of the biggest names in the beverage industry. Competition is rife: neither Pepsi nor Coca-Cola has shied away from expressing financial goals for the coming decade. Coca-Cola stated in 2009 that its ambition was to double turnover to $200bn by 2020,and Pepsi have announced plans to invest $5.5bn into the India market before 2020.

In fact, PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi asserted that while it had “built a highly successful business in India over the course of many years... we’ve only scratched the surface of the long-term growth opportunities that exist for PepsiCo.”

However, whilst the growth potential is obvious on paper, in reality it is a lot more complicated. The key challenge relates to developing countries' infrastructure and the impact that this has on refrigeration. Whilst occasional power cuts are a nuisance for shopkeepers in developed countries, they happen so infrequently that they can be ignored. Power outages in the developing world, however, cannot. Most shops are lucky to get a few hours’ electricity each day – power outages last for hours, sometimes days, and come with no warning. This irregular, intermittent power supply is the norm in areas struggling to service huge populations, and running a conventional beverage cooler is near impossible. 

A global brewer recently told us that they have extreme difficulty in serving cold beer across Africa, and recognise that they are selling an inferior product because they just can’t keep it cool enough due to the local power supplies.

And in those countries where the infrastructure is a lot more robust, the shopkeepers themselves can ill afford to have fridges running all night. As such it is often the case that fridges are turned off when a shop closes, meaning that drinks are warm come the morning and can take many hours - possibly until closing time - to return to their ideal serving temperature.

These are complex hurdles that need to be overcome. Clearly beverage companies do not have any control over infrastructure investment in these emerging economies, but equally, the need to find a solution to their quandary is pressing.  And solving the problem has the potential to be extremely lucrative. For those that can crack the cooling problem, the opportunities to take ownership of the markets are considerable. Not only will the choice between a cold drink and a warm one be something of a formality, but longer-term brand loyalty is also very much up for grabs at this stage in these relatively untapped markets.

An old problem, with a new solution

We're working with a number of global companies from the beverage industry to help them pilot and implement our ground-breaking cooling system in some of the most challenging retail environments in the world. What makes Sure Chill technology unique is that it doesn't require a constant power source, yet continually provides perfect cooling during periods of no power. What power it does need can be drawn from the mains, or from solar in an off-grid situation.

The technology works in an entirely different way from conventional refrigeration, which has barely developed in the last century. The scientific principle behind Sure Chill concerns a unique property of water. Simply put, water is most dense (heaviest) not as a solid (ice), but as a liquid (water) at 4°C. At this temperature, water will sink. At any other temperature, warmer or cooler – even as ice – it will rise. Sure Chill technology creates a constantly chilled environment of 4°C around a refrigeration compartment. Coincidentally, 4°C is also the ideal temperature for storing vaccines, fresh food and beverages. The temperature within a Sure Chill refrigerator, when stabilised, can only ever be a perfect 4°C, with no difference in temperature from one shelf to the next.

Sure Chill technology means that a farmer in rural Madhya Pradesh could enjoy a perfectly cooled cola just the same as a shopper in Manhattan. The experience would be the same; regardless of whether or not the power has been interrupted or the shopkeeper has had to turn the electric off overnight.  

Such a scenario doesn't have to be just a vision; the right technology means that for beverage companies all over the world it could just as easily be a reality. Our new way of thinking about refrigeration is offering these big brands a unique opportunity – their best chance of breaking into new markets and reaching the 2020 targets they set at the beginning of the decade. The race is on.

To find out more about Sure Chill visit

Sure Chill Technology

Inspired by nature to work with nature, the technology behind Sure Chill makes the impossible, possible

The science behind Sure Chill refrigeration technology

Read more about Sure Chill


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UK:  The display refrigeration equipment in grocery shops, convenience stores, and restaurants will typically account for 25% to 60% of the electricity used. Modern equipment has seen many advances in refrigeration technology  which are both cost effective and improve product quality.

The size and type of your business will determine the type of refrigeration equipment used.

Central refrigeration systems consist of refrigerated spaces connected to a remote condenser. These systems have the advantage of emitting waste heat outside of the conditioned space through the condenser.

Stand-alone refrigeration systems, often called merchandisers, usually have the case, evaporator and condenser packaged in a single unit, similar to a home refrigerator. These stand-alone units are commonly used in smaller facilities where a central refrigeration system is not justified.

There are many tips to consider when maintaining your equipment but the most common advice is to clean cooling coils regularly to ensure proper airflow and heat transfer.

The US website states that energy costs account for 15% of a grocery store’s operating budget.

Because grocery stores’ profit margins are so thin, approximately 1%, every £1.00 in energy savings is equivalent to increasing sales by £59.00.

If refrigeration comprises 50 % or more of the electricity costs for grocery and convenience stores it is likely that lighting will account for 20% whilst cooling and ventilation both average about 13 %. Any energy saving strategy that reduces these costs will increase floor space profitability and improve the operating margins of your business.

In “A Cool Display” published in the March 14 copy of Grocery Trader we stated that

“Thermal Engineering suggests that the UK’s retail food outlets are responsible for approximately 3% of total electrical energy consumption. Refrigeration accounts for a major percentage of in-store electricity demand ranging from 25% - 30% for larger hypermarkets to over 60% for food-dominant convenience stores. The report concludes that if those stores with above average energy usage reduced their consumption to industry-wide average levels through implementing energy conservation measures, then an additional 10% electrical energy savings could be achieved. This represents around 840 GWh of electricity and a reduction of 355,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions if applied to all the stores of the major retail food chains in the UK”.

Obviously, grocery and convenience stores have long hours of operation and are open most days of the week. Some equipment is on and running constantly even when the store is closed. Energy costs can add up even more when equipment is old and inefficient.

During a recent visit to a factory in Stoke we were able to view new display refrigeration cabinets using the latest technology to reduce the energy consumed. This company also refurbish old units and we saw many that had been returned for repair (see figure 1). 

Figure 1- display refrigeration units awaiting repair

Typically the reason for system failure was caused by the clogged or compacted coils which increase the head pressure and cause the compressor motors to fail (see figure 2). Although this repair can be completed by a competent mobile service engineer many of the major retailers simply remove the unit for offsite repair so that the floor space can continue working with a replacement. 

In all air movement equipment it is imperative that the resistance is kept at a minimum.    

On large air handlers you will typically have a pre-filter followed by secondary and even tertiary filters depending upon the application.

Figure 2- typical coil condition


In refrigeration equipment, including remote condensers, the coils are unprotected and so all airborne debris is drawn into the coil section and lodges between the fins.

1mm of dirt will cause a 21% drop in efficiency and can increase refrigeration energy use by 35%.
Clean equipment runs more efficiently and so condenser and evaporative coils need to be kept as clean as possible.


Figure 3 - magnetic sample located on louvre

That is why the use of a PreVent Equipment Filter (see figure 3) is slowly being recognised by the food industry as a cost effective upgrade to existing and new equipment.The filter sits on the outside of the air intake louvre which allows retail staff to remove and clean them as part of their daily cleaning schedule. 

There are approximately 800,000 retail display units running in the UK with more being added everyday as the number of convenience stores grow. There is a lot of energy to be saved if these units can be kept running as efficiently as possible which equates to more profit for the retailers. 


For more information about how air intake filters are being used, contact RAB Specialist Engineers Limited on 01635 248633 or visit

This article was produced by Richard Betts, Managing Director at RAB Specialist Engineer


Bio:  Richard has worked in the M&E Building Services industry for over 35-years.

In 1994 Richard formed ECEX, focusing on the M&E Building Services market and specilaising in procurement and supply of sub-contract labour to the industry. In 2012 Richard sold his interests in ECEX and formed a new business, RAB Specialist Engineers which focuses on the supply of air intake filter screens, ductwork, insulation & pipework, and key areas of building maintenance. 



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Every month, in the pages of industry trade magazines, I read manufacturers’ statements, claiming the introduction of “innovative” and “ground breaking” products and technology. I readily acknowledge that advances in compressor and evaporator technology, as well as the introduction of EC fans and electronic controllers, have improved efficiency and performance. There have also been developments in refrigerants used in the industry, but these have been largely dictated by regulation and legislation.

For three generations, the evolution of cold storage technology has, in the main, been component led, with the fundamental principles of refrigeration remaining unchanged. The result is that the majority of food service refrigeration equipment is of a similar design, sharing many of its characteristics with a domestic fridge from the 1940s.

Turning Refrigeration Through 90 degrees

In a fairly short period, Adande has evolved from a HVAC engineering consultancy into a successful and respected manufacturer of refrigeration products for food service and food retailing. This has not been achieved by following industry custom and practice, but by challenging established wisdom on the design of refrigeration equipment. I’m not saying that we have turned refrigeration on its head, but we did rotate it through 90o, developing a system which is based on horizontal insulated drawers instead of conventional upright cabinets with doors.

The development of the Adande refrigerated drawer system was prompted by chefs working around the clock on North Sea oil and gas rigs. The kitchen fridges and freezers were in constant use, resulting in cold air spillage at each door opening and leading to food deterioration and wastage.

Our solution was a unique and subsequently patented drawer system, featuring a modified air flow pattern to deliver high efficiency cooling. It works on the principle that cold air is denser than warm air, with specially designed insulated drawers holding the refrigerated air within the units no matter how frequently the drawers are opened. Adande units eliminate the warm air infiltration, which is associated with upright and other under counter refrigeration equipment, for energy savings of up to 60%. Adande systems also offer improved humidity and temperature stability for increased storage periods with food maintained at superior quality and a reduced risk of bacterial contamination. Independent, like for like tests have indicated that food waste may be reduced by 25% by using our drawers, rather than alternative refrigeration systems. The efficiency of the system also reduces duty on components, such as motors and compressors, for reduced maintenance and extended product life cycle.

A Fresh Approach to Retail Refrigeration

The inertia in our industry also applies to refrigerated display cabinets in the retail sector. The preferred solution for the display of chilled goods in supermarkets and convenience stores is the open front multi deck cabinet. Whilst these displays have benefited from component led enhancements over the years, the basic refrigeration characteristics of such cabinets have remained largely unchanged.

In the quest for more energy efficient refrigeration equipment, glass doors on open front cabinets were initially regarded by many manufacturers and retailers as the answer. However, evidence has indicated that glass doors act as physical barriers to shopping with a detrimental effect on browsing and impulse purchases.

In addressing a solution to the situation, we adopted a fresh approach to the principles of air flow and refrigeration, incorporating thermodynamic theory researched by Dr Ed Hammond of ECH Engineering and manufacturing input from The Bond Group. After extensive development and testing we unveiled Aircell, which is a unique and patented air flow management system, designed to reduce energy consumption and improve the shopping experience, without the need for glass doors. Subsequently, we have worked closely with cabinet manufacturer, Manor Concepts, to produce prototype models, which have been trialled in the new Tesco eco store at Lincoln. In the coming months, Aircell will be available via several UK cabinet manufacturers, under licence agreements.

Aircell is designed for open front, refrigerated multi deck cabinets. Independent tests have proven that Aircell delivers significant energy savings, as well as more accurate and stable temperatures, compared with conventional cabinets.

Unlike conventional multi deck displays, which have a single column of cold air from the top to the bottom of the cabinet, Aircell divides the merchandising envelope into separate cells between shelves. The smaller cells have a shorter air column and independent management of air movement, limiting the pressure of stacked dense cold air on the air curtain and reducing cold air spillage from the case. The performance of the Aircell system is also enhanced by the elimination of back panel flow, promoting temperature stability and product loading flexibility.

By reducing the amount of chilled air which spills from refrigerated cabinets, Aircell also limits the impact of cold aisle syndrome, improving the shopping experience. It is customer friendly, providing ease of access to chilled merchandise for browsing and shopping.

The demands from end users for energy efficient refrigeration equipment, with operational and performance benefits, have never offered more challenges to manufacturers than they do today. For those seeking to meet these challenges, I offer the following advice: the refrigeration industry needs innovation not duplication.

This article was produced by Ian Wood, Managing Director at Adande Refrigeration

Ian Wood - Managing Director - Adande Refrigeration

Ian Wood is the co-founder and Managing Director of Adande and is recognised throughout the industry as a refrigeration pioneer. Ian addresses the need for a new approach to the development of cold storage solutions and challenges manufacturers to innovate, rather than duplicate existing technology.





Fridgehub, providing information and resources to Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heat Pump Suppliers, Contractors and Retail Business Operators

Visit the Fridgehub App StoreBecome a member of the Fridgehub communitySign up and register your Company in the Fridgehub directory