Star claims new benchmark for energy performance


04 October 2023
The refrigeration systems at Bidfood Glasgow

Star Refrigeration says a CO₂ system it installed in a Glasgow cold store has set new standards for energy consumption. The system, at Bidfood's new Glasgow site, is said to consume just half the energy recommended by UK’s best practice guidelines for cold and chill stores.

Bidfood, one of the UK’s leading foodservice providers, has continuously demonstrated its commitment towards a greener future. The installation by Star aligns with its climate targets to reduce carbon emissions by at least 90% by 2045, particularly as the new facility now boasts an environmentally benign refrigerant providing close to a 50% reduction in energy consumption. 

Dr Rob Lamb, Group Sales and Marketing Director at Star Refrigeration, said: "The refrigeration systems at Bidfood’s Glasgow site demonstrate the potential for businesses aiming to transition towards energy efficient and climate friendly operations by using CO₂ cooling technology. Bidfood’s decision to prioritise sustainability has not only set a commendable benchmark but has also delivered tangible benefits, showcasing reduced energy costs and carbon emissions that outperform the industry’s best practice standards across the country.''

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Operational since November 2022, Bidfood Glasgow’s refrigeration system uses carbon dioxide (CO₂) as the refrigerant. The systems are located externally, adjacent to the building, and provide cooling to a freezer, chill store and marshalling area. The site’s core freezer system maintains a temperature of -25°C, with a design cooling duty of 245kW, while the chill areas operate at +20°C and have a combined cooling duty of 268kW. To ensure optimal air circulation and a consistent temperature throughout the facility, multiple coolers equipped with efficient EC fans have been installed. Running at a speed of 50%, these fans offer savings of up to 87.5% over their traditional counterparts. 

The cooling plant has also been fitted with a heat recovery system which repurposes waste heat for underfloor heating and provides warm glycol defrost on the air coolers. Its control system offers real-time data monitoring, fault dial out and remote access capabilities to allow for swift performance adjustments, and ongoing maintenance. 

Energy data recorded for the 37,500 m3 facility has been collected and analysed since it was installed in 2022. The results reveal that the Specific Energy Consumption at Bidfood's Glasgow site stands at 10.2 kWh/m3/year - an energy consumption that is half of that of the UK’s best practice industry standard of 20.4 kWh/m3/year. This translates into a CO₂ emissions reduction of 77 tonnes annually.

Claire Cox, Head of Property for Bidfood, said: “Partnering with Star Refrigeration has been instrumental in strengthening our commitment to sustainability while improving the efficiency of our operations across our cold stores. The energy efficiency achieved at our Glasgow site through the installation of a CO₂ refrigeration system far exceeded our expectations. We appreciate Star’s contribution and are encouraged to continue our joint efforts towards improved sustainability and operational efficiency at our facilities in the future.”