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DFDS to add Sunswap TRU

Oct. 15, 2021
Agreement for first customer deployment of its zero-emissions trailer refrigeration unit caps busy year for U.K.-based engineering firm

DFDS plans to add a Sunswap transport refrigeration unit (TRU) to its fleet in early 2022, according to the United Kingdom-based engineering firm. Following initial deployment, Sunswap expects an order for production units to be confirmed as part of DFDS’s efforts to decarbonize the cold chain.

Sunswap has been engaging with stakeholders in the industry since completing an investment round to start the year in order to bring its cost-effective, zero-emission TRU products to market. The deal with DFDS, Northern Europe’s largest shipping and logistics company, is a key step in the firm’s mission to support the transition away from diesel TRUs.

“It is hugely exciting to be able to announce our partnership with DFDS,” said Michael Lowe, Sunswap’s CEO. “They are exploring the optimal way to transition their TRU fleet to zero-emission technology and we are delighted to be working with them as part of the solution.

“The Sunswap team has been working incredibly hard behind the scenes this year, developing our unique TRU technology and building partnerships with large supermarkets and logistics firms. It has been pleasing to see that businesses in the industry are increasingly cognizant of the need to switch to green transport refrigeration to support the drive to achieve net zero. Our order books are filling up and we welcome discussions with any businesses looking to transition to cost-effective, industry leading sustainable technology.

In September 2020, DFDS launched a climate action plan to become carbon neutral by 2050. Deployment of Sunswap’s zero-emissions TRUs aligns with the company’s strategy of investing in “innovative, sustainable technology that reduces pollution, waste and noise in the communities in which they operate,” Sunswap said.

TRUs are used across the world, in particular by supermarkets and logistics companies, to transport essential resources such as vaccines and chilled produce.

“DFDS is committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050,” said Eddie Green, DFDS’s Head of Cold Chain U.K. and Ireland. “We are pleased to now have steps in place to explore how we can eliminate emissions from our trucks operating our cold chain services.

“I am confident the deployment with Sunswap will be a success and am looking forward to seeing how their trailer works within our operation. We are committed to investing in innovative technologies that support a better climate. If everything goes as planned, we are in a position to place an order straightaway.

“DFDS continues to work with businesses that can help us to make progress on our ambitious climate action plan.”

The deployment will involve DFDS using Sunswap’s zero-emission TRU on UK roads in February 2022. The demonstrator will be used to transport real-world produce for DFDS, so the company can road test a green alternative for its current fleet. Following a successful deployment, DFDS is expected to confirm an agreed pre-order.

This partnership caps a busy year for Sunswap, which moved its headquarters to a larger engineering facility to expand its team and expedite product development. In September, the firm also was selected as one of Tech Nation’s Net Zero 2.0 cohort, a growth program backed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

“Working with DFDS to deploy a zero-emission TRU, with the potential for a significant order to follow, is a substantial milestone for the firm,” Lowe said. “We will continue to work at speed, alongside government and the cold chain industry, to drive forward Sunswap’s mission to decarbonise the cold chain.” 

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