In the January issue of Chain Store Age, we discussed government regulations that will affect supermarket and convenience store retailers in 2016. Below are the highlights:
In 2016, retail chains will continue to face increasing competition and high consumer expectations. Changing regulations will also impact retail businesses. We see three regulatory issues as the most critical for the retail industry this year and beyond:
- Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)
For retailers offering fresh foods, FSMA will have an impact on food integrity and safety, and may help with reducing food waste. As retailers focus more on “farm to table” freshness, the result will be an increased importance on collecting and utilizing data related to the safety and integrity of foods.
- Refrigerant and energy efficiency standards
The EPA and DOE are working diligently with industry leaders to decrease greenhouse gas emissions, move to climate-friendly refrigerants and employ advanced refrigeration technologies. Most of these technologies are not “drop-in” substitutes for retrofitting. Retailers and their suppliers will need to plan and collaborate to fulfill all guidelines.
- Changing workforce regulations
Retailers will continue to deal with employment and workforce regulation changes. Increasing labor costs will lead retailers to look to additional technology and automation for solutions.
You can read the full Chain Store Age article on page 26 of the January print issue.
What regulations will impact you most in 2016? Please share your insights in the comments below.
President, Retail Solutions
Emerson Climate Technologies
This is post number eight of a series.
Transcritical, cascade, and secondary CO2 systems
This series continues with the introduction of transcritical, cascade and secondary systems; it explains how each system works; and then compares their advantages and disadvantages.
Overview of Application Considerations for R744
The properties of R744 affect how the refrigerant is applied (see post 3 of this series for more details):
- The high density of R744 compared to hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) results in the requirement for less compressor displacement, typically 1/5th of that needed for R404A. However the motor size is similar since the work done is approximately the same. Smaller pipe diameters are another result, especially on the suction side of the system.
- Because of the higher pressures of R744, all components require a higher maximum pressure rating.
- The high discharge temperatures of R744 (because of the high index of compression) result in the need for two-stage compression for LT systems that reject heat to ambient air.
- The low critical temperature of R744 results in differences in system design and control. In the retail sector this results in R744 being used mainly in the following types of systems:
- Transcritical systems: Systems are called transcritical when they “transition” from subcritical to supercritical operation. In supercritical operation the heat rejection takes place above the critical point of the refrigerant (for CO2 ambient temperatures from 68 °F to 77 °F (20 °C to 25 °C) (See Figure 1)
- Booster systems: Systems with two temperature levels, e.g., -31 °F and -4 °F (-35 °C and -20 °C) evaporating temperature and with low-stage and medium stage compressors (see Figure 4).
- Cascade systems: R744 is the low-stage refrigerant in a cascade system in which the R744 is always subcritical. Heat rejected by condensing R744 is absorbed by the evaporating high-stage refrigerant. The high-stage system is usually a conventional system using HFC or hydrocarbon (HC) refrigerants, known as hybrid cascade.
- Secondary systems: R744 is used as a secondary volatile fluid pumped through the heat exchangers (cooling load). The CO2 is not completely evaporated; the gas is condensated by a chiller.
In the next article of this series we’ll take a closer look at retail transcritical systems.
Director – CO2 Business Development, Emerson Climate Technologies
Visit our website for additional information on CO2 Solutions from Emerson.
Excerpt from original document; Commercial CO2 Refrigeration Systems, Guide for Subcritical and Transcritical CO2 Applications.
To read all posts in our series on CO2 as a Refrigerant, click on the links below:
- Series Introduction
- Criteria for Choosing Refrigerants
- Properties of R744
- Introduction to Trancritical Operation
- Five Potential Hazards of R744
- Comparison of R744 with Other Refrigerants
- R744 Advantages / Disadvantages
Emerson Climate Technologies recently completed the sixteenth installment of its E360 Webinar series with a live broadcast from the show floor at the 2016 AHR Expo in Orlando, Florida. Dr. Rajan Rajendran, vice president of system innovation center and sustainability, presented the topic of “Innovation in Refrigeration” to an audience consisting of roughly 130 at-show attendees and another 127 online participants.
I recently wrote an article for Convenience Store Decisions, highlighting the practical benefits of facility controls for today’s convenience store operator. A brief summary of the article is below.
Today, many convenience stores utilize energy management systems for HVAC, refrigeration, lighting and other building systems. Some retailers couple this with monitoring services that provide real-time performance data on building operations, system efficiency, energy usage and more. These operators can use facility insights to increase equipment uptime, eliminate unnecessary truck rolls, minimize emergency service call costs and improve effectiveness of service technicians.
Below are six benefits of using facility controls for improved operation and maintenance of convenience store refrigeration systems:
- Information and expertise keeps stores operating smoothly.
- Expert triage avoids unnecessary, costly service calls.
- Direct-to-store alerts allow local problem solving.
- Remote monitoring can identify system issues before they appear locally.
- When service calls are needed, technicians are better prepared before dispatch.
- Operate consistently across all stores with enterprise-wide control.
There is a great opportunity for convenience store operators to better utilize store equipment for a higher return on investment by leveraging energy management systems and monitoring services. New technology and IoT deployment is improving options daily, and Emerson Climate Technologies can help operators currently using these systems to better understand the latest capabilities available.
Read the full Convenience Store Decisions article online here.
Product Manager, ProAct Enterprise Software and Services
Emerson Climate Technologies Retail Solutions
In a recent article for Chain Store Age, I shared insights around five trends facing the supermarket retail industry in 2016. Below are the highlights.
As 2016 begins, supermarket retailers continue to adapt to changing consumer demands, industry issues and regulations affecting their businesses. Some grocers are expanding their footprints, others are narrowing to specialty formats, and some seem to be doing both. All are facing increased competition and high expectations around freshness, convenience and transparency.
We see the emerging trends below critical for retail businesses in 2016 and beyond:
- Authenticating the fresh foods story: Fresh is at the forefront. We’re seeing an increase in the overall offering of fresh as retailers aim to meet the expectations of today’s consumer. What is needed now is to prove “fresh.”
- Convergence of concepts driven by convenience: Driven by the consumer’s demand for convenience, food retail concepts, formats and locations are converging. Today’s shoppers are pushing retail businesses to expand, invest in fresh foods and provide a consistent brand experience.
- Impact of changing regulations: Two regulatory issues, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and refrigerant regulation changes, will be top of mind for food retailers in 2016.
- Turning workforce concerns into opportunities: There is an increasing difficulty in maintaining a skilled technical workforce. As the current workforce ages, technical experts are harder to find, and concerns arise around workforce costs.
- Consolidation propels operational improvements: As large format stores get even bigger and small format stores become more specialized, retailers are reinvesting in new and/or consolidated infrastructures. With this comes a greater need for improved equipment operation and maintenance.
Read the full article on Chain Store Age here.
And for industry insights on 2016 equipment, design and operations trends, read this recent Grocery Headquarters article.
President, Retail Solutions
Emerson Climate Technologies