Fresh & Easy Opens 1st SoCal Store with CO2 Refrigeration

Tesco-owned Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has opened the first grocery store in Southern California to use naturally occurring carbon dioxide (CO2) refrigeration.

The store, located in Rosemead, is the grocer’s first to be GreenChill certified and is among four stores that the company opened today, including its 100th in California.

"Fresh & Easy's Rosemead store is an excellent example of what can be achieved when a supermarket puts technology to work to help the ozone layer and fight climate change," said Keilly Witman, manager of EPA's GreenChill Partnership. "This store's commitment to reducing refrigerant emissions proves that Fresh & Easy is serious about protecting the environment."

Fresh & Easy’s sub critical cascade CO2 refrigeration system -- one of only four in the United States, according to the retailer – was developed to reduce the impact of the store’s refrigeration on the ozone layer by about 70 percent, as compared to industry standards. By utilizing a natural refrigerant, the system has an approximately 50 percent lower Global Warming Potential than traditional refrigerants.

The store also earned a silver certification award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) GreenChill Partnership by meeting tough benchmarks for cutting emissions that harm the earth’s protective ozone layer and contribute to global warming. Fewer than 40 of the nation’s 35,000 grocery stores have received GreenChill Store Certification awards.

In addition to Fresh & Easy’s efforts to reduce refrigerant emissions, the company also stresses energy efficiency. “On average, our stores use 30 percent less energy than a typical supermarket, which helps our customers save money while also helping the environment,” said Fresh & Easy CEO Tim Mason. “We’ve worked hard to make sure we are thoughtful in the impact we have on the environment and we’re excited to continue to innovate in this area.”

Energy efficient characteristics of the company’s refrigeration units include:
• Energy efficient doors on freezer and dairy cases
• Triple-pane glass with an anti-fog coating on refrigerator doors, eliminating the need for door heaters for icing or fogging
• Night curtains on refrigerators to conserve energy while keeping product at the appropriate temperature when stores are closed
• LED lighting in all chilled cases

The company worked closely with partners Kysor/Warren, Columbus, Ga., the equipment manufacturer and designer of the system; and Source Refrigeration & HVAC, Inc., Anaheim, Calif., which handled store specific engineering and installation. Minneapolis-based Verisae provided the energy management system controlling the system and its software will be used to help Fresh & Easy track energy use and operating costs.

El Segundo, Calif.-based Fresh & Easy operates 163 stores in California, Arizona, and Nevada.


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