IN THIS AGE OF SOCIAL AND CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY, customers expect the brands they believe in to have a social conscience. They should make the world a more sustainable and better
place to live by preventing climate change
and reducing greenhouse gases.
While many multi-national corporations
have pledged to lower their carbon footprints by signing on to the White House
climate change initiative, the “American
Business Act on Climate Pledge,” government agencies are also issuing regulations to
assist in meeting that goal.
In an effort to reduce greenhouse
gases and slow climate change, the U. S.
Department of Energy (DOE) has revised
its energy efficiency standards that set the
maximum allowable energy consumption
for specific industry segments including commercial refrigeration.
The most recent standards were released
in April 2014 and are
scheduled to take effect
March 27, 2017, giving
businesses just under
two years to prepare for
Most food retailers will
be profoundly impacted
by having to meet the
new maximum energy consumption standard required for cooler and freezer doors
based on door size, which are more stringent
than current standards in effect since 2012.
Fortunately for food and beverage retail-
ers, new technology is being introduced to
meet these new standards for cooler doors
while providing enhanced merchandising
visibility for better product positioning.
A key new technology is vacuum insulated
glass (VIG) that provides 70 percent more
energy efficiency over current standard door
products. These new doors not only meet the
2017 DOE standards, but their energy savings provide a quick two-year ROI through
an immediate reduction in utility costs.
In addition, these new doors are classified
as “Zero Energy Doors” meaning they require
no energy to provide excellent insulation and
anti-condensation capabilities. New, specialized coatings on interior door glass prevent
fogging without power even in humid environments. An additional advantage is lower
maintenance and operational costs due to
fewer anti-condensate wear parts.
The next generation energy-efficient
doors also provide a much wider merchandise viewing area for greater product visibility than traditional doors. This results in
more sales and greater customer satisfaction through easily viewable merchandise
While the new commercial refrigeration
standards require challenging reductions in
energy usage, food and beverage retailers
stand to benefit in a number of ways:
INCREASED PROFITABILITY: A U.S. government Energy Star study found that supermarkets are the most electricity-intensive
type of commercial building, and their
energy costs are the second highest expenditure behind labor. Of those energy costs,
the greatest portion is for refrigeration at 56
percent. A 10 percent reduction in energy
costs can increase net profit by as much as
INCREASED SALES: Keeping cool air
contained in refrigerator cases with effi-
ciently insulated and/or energy-free doors
provides a more comfortable environment
for shoppers, eliminating cold microclimates
in aisles. A more comfortable shopping
experience will lengthen customer shopping
dwell times, increasing overall in-store sales.
REDUCED IMPACT OF ENERGY PRICE
FLUCTUATIONS: When less of the operating
budget is spent on energy, electricity price
fluctuations such as in the event of major
weather anomalies or new regulations will
have much less financial impact.
FOOD SAFETY: Highly efficient coolers
holding perishable goods at proper temperatures more uniformly reduce the possibility
of premature product spoilage and decrease
POSITIVE PUBLIC IMAGE: Retailers can
show they are reducing their energy usage
and carbon footprint to help the environment and maintain a more sustainable business model.
On March 27, 2017, the grocery and convenience store industry will be required to meet
new, more stringent DOE commercial refrigeration standards for individual cooler and
freezer doors. While the mandate may seem
formidable, the refrigeration door manufacturing industry has innovated Zero Energy
Door solutions that not only exceed the new
standards but also reduce operating costs
while increasing merchandising opportunities with panoramic viewing. Cooler doors
equipped with VIG and zero energy anti-condensation coatings are available today
and provide ROI, lower operating costs and a
practical, cost-effective way to demonstrate
corporate sustainability in a more environ-mentally- and socially-conscious world.
COOLER DOORS PREVAIL
Cutting energy costs through efficiency improvements could yield retailers tens of millions of dollars in additional profit.
By Jeff Brooks
Jeff Brooks is national accounts manager for Anthony, a
Dover Co. He can be reached at