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Fresh & Easy grocery store uses natural refrigerant

Sept. 13, 2010
Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has opened the first grocery store in Southern California to use naturally occurring carbon dioxide (CO2) refrigeration.

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has opened the first grocery store in Southern California to use naturally occurring carbon dioxide (CO2) refrigeration. The Rosemead CA store is Fresh & Easy’s first to be GreenChill-certified and is among four stores that the company opened recently, including the 100th in California.

This subcritical cascade CO2 refrigeration system—one of only four in the United States—reduces the impact of the store’s refrigeration on the ozone layer by about 70% compared with industry standards. By using a natural refrigerant, the system has an approximately 50% lower global warming potential than traditional refrigerants.

The store also earned a silver certification award from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) GreenChill Partnership by meeting 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.

Fresh & Easy also stresses energy efficiency. Energy-efficient characteristics of the company’s refrigeration units include:

•Energy-efficient doors on freezer and dairy cases

•Triple-pane glass with anti-fog coating on refrigerator doors, so no door heaters are needed 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, the equipment manufacturer and designer of the system, and Source, which handled store-specific engineering and installation. 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.

Fresh & Easy operates 163 stores in California, Arizona, and Nevada. It opened its first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold-certified store in 2009 and is a pilot member of the LEED Volume Certification Program. The company has also joined the California Climate Action Registry and The Climate Registry to disclose its greenhouse gas emissions. At its distribution center in Riverside CA, the company invested $13 million in a solar roof installation, which at 500,000 square feet is one of California’s largest.

Visit for more information about Fresh & Easy. More details about GreenChill are available at

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