Refrigerants Naturally! Unilever


Our Profile

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With more than 400 brands focused on health and wellbeing, no other company touches so many people’s lives in so many different ways.

For us, sustainability is integral to how we do business. Embedding sustainability into every stage of the life cycle of our products, we’re working with our suppliers to support responsible approaches to new technologies and production.

Our Technology

Our main target is our point-of-sale ice cream freezer cabinets. Cabinets are available in both horizontal and vertical formats. It's not as simple as just buying a new refrigerant and putting it in an existing cabinet. We have done a lot to develop the technology, and we are now implementing the roll-out. HC cabinets have the added benefit of being about 10% more energy efficient than traditional cabinets.

Our Progress

In 2000, we committed to stop buying new HFC cabinets by 2005. Having proved the HC technology, we began replacing cabinets with this technology in 2004. By 2014 we had introduced over 1.8 million HC cabinets globally.

In 2008 Ben & Jerry's made a Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) application for the use of the climate-friendly refrigerant in ice cream cabinets in the United States. The introduction of new refrigerants in the US is highly regulated, requiring formal approval by the Environmental Protection Agency through the SNAP programme. In 2011, the US EPA approved the use of HC for our application up to a refrigerant charge of 150 grams. Almost all of our cabinets can be produced within this limit. The USA now buys all of its cabinets in HC.

As the world's largest producer of ice cream, we will accelerate our roll-out of freezer cabinets that use climate-friendly (hydrocarbon) refrigerants. We have already purchased over 2.0 million units with the new refrigerant.

We have also been pioneering new models using state-of-the-art components to increase their energy efficiency. Over 2010-14, we purchased around 700,000 of these more energy-efficient freezers

Working together with Refrigerants, Naturally! has accelerated our efforts in replacing harmful F-gases in our point of sale cooling equipment.