Energy is a hot topic for the food retailing industry. According to a survey conducted by the EHI Retail Institute, German retailers paid an average of 55 euros per square meter of selling space in 2010 – and counting. Retailers claim that their energy costs are rising by about ten percent per year. Here, refrigeration units (44%) use up the most electricity, followed by lighting and air conditioning.
According to EHI, the majority of these retail companies plan to invest in order to lower their energy costs. For the most part, these funds will be put towards large-format glass tops for refrigerated cabinets, more efficient appliances, CO2 refrigeration units and advanced technologies that help reduce the loss of refrigerants. Around half of these companies are also planning to invest in more energy efficient lighting solutions.
“Our easy to use self-closing glass door systems reduce the temperature exchanges between the cooling chamber and the surrounding environment significantly,” explains Freddy Oblack, General Sales Manager Europe for SCHOTT Termofrost, one of the largest manufacturers of food display products for the commercial refrigeration industry. “This means up to 70 percent of the energy can be saved compared to open refrigerator cabinets,” he adds.
Thanks to these large size glass panels, products can be displayed in a vertical manner to save space. The special safety glass used does not fog up and can even be supplied with an anti-reflective coating. In addition, LED or fluorescent lighting can also be integrated into the slim frame system. This means products can be displayed in an attractive manner in a way that saves electricity, yet can hardly be seen.
The door systems from SCHOTT Termofrost have been optimized for use with normal temperatures (up to +2°C) or frozen foods (as low as -25°C). They can be used as either initial equipment for refrigerators that feature glass doors (OEM) or in so-called retrofitting. In fact, new door systems that save more energy can even be installed in existing door fittings from SCHOTT Termofrost.