The sector proposes to review the temperature ranges (mainly the upper range) of the refrigeration equipment in supermarkets (refrigeration chambers, refrigeration walls and freezer cabinets), without jeopardising the food safety of the products stored in them. Generally, products with different temperature ranges can be found in the same equipment – e.g. in a dairy wall, yoghurts can coexist with fresh milk – so they are always programmed taking into account the most restrictive to guarantee the correct preservation of the food products that are stored and displayed at the points of sale.
According to studies on the optimisation of energy expenditure, and for each degree that we raise the evaporation temperature, the compressors increase their capacity and their COP (ratio between power supplied and power absorbed). Example: increasing the evaporation temperature of the cooling walls by +2.5ºC, the cooling capacity of the compressor increases by 14%, while the electrical power absorbed only increases by 6%. This results in a 7% higher COP. In short, the compressors of the power plant have a higher performance, so that, for the same cooling needs, they need to operate for a shorter time.
If this same approach were applied to the other links in the food chain (distribution platforms and warehouses, temperature-controlled transport, etc.), together with strategies to raise awareness and educate the public (who are often the ones who do not maintain the cold chain after the act of purchase), the energy savings would be even greater.