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Welcome to the Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE newsletter!

Sustainable cooling for Europe’s organic retail/small food retail sector

Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE is about:

  • Climate-friendly cooling using natural refrigerants
  • Training and certification on climate-friendly alternatives
  • Technical specifications for the use of these alternatives

Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE is an EU funded project to support the uptake of climate friendly cooling alternatives for food preservation, shop air conditioning and heating by heat pumps. The project supports an effective and timely achievement of the EU 2030 climate targets.

Project launched in June 2019 

The Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE project activities started in June 2019 with a kick-off workshop in Germany and will continue until end of 2021.

The project consortium consists of eight partners from across Europe, bringing together organic retail associations, experts and technicians of the refrigeration sector and market developers: HEAT (project leader, Germany), shecco (Belgium), AgroBio – Associação Portuguesa de Agricultura Biológica (Portugal), BNN – Bundesverband Naturkost Naturwaren (Germany), SEAE – Sociedad Española de Agricultura Ecológica/Agroecología (Spain), BIV – Bundesinnungsverband des Deutschen Kälteanlagenbauerhandwerks (Germany), KNVvK – Koninklijke Nederlandse Vereniging voor Koude (The Netherlands) and STEK – Stichting Emissiepreventie Koudetechniek (The Netherlands).

Find out more about the project partners

Project objectives 

The Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE project aims to promote the uptake of climate-friendly cooling alternatives among end users of refrigeration, air-conditioning and heat pump (RACHP) equipment and servicing providers. Our main objectives are:

Raise awareness

Raise awareness among end-users and the distribution chain on climate friendly cooling and natural refrigerants through a Europe-wide sustainability platform with a Refrigerants, Naturally! leadership campaign, guidance documents and social media outreach for the OFR sector

Increase the uptake of training on climate-friendly alternatives

Increase the uptake of training on climate-friendly alternatives through a RAC School platform hosting easy-to-access, flexible MOOC e-courses with integrated live webinar sessions on technical policy and market aspects for RAC engineers and OFR end-users; as well as a listing of available training suppliers and material

Improve the uptake of climate-friendly technologies 

Improve the uptake of climate-friendly technologies and develop technical specifications for the use of non-fluorinated technologies (partly flammable) technologies through best-practice technology guides, RAC contracting checklists, case studies, policy and standard guides for the OFR sector

Support an effective and timely achievement of the EU 2030 climate targets

Support an effective and timely achievement of the EU 2030 climate targets (for small supermarkets up to 1,000m²) through the F-Gas Regulation, Ecodesign Directive, Energy Efficiency Directive, Circular Economy Package, Heating& Cooling Strategy 

Find out more about our actions and objectives

Participate in our online market survey 

Get involved! Help to promote the switch to climate-friendly technologies in the small (organic) food retail sector and thus reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by participating in our online survey.

Stores selling food have a 50% higher energy usage than other commercial buildings. Refrigeration makes up to 30-50% of total energy in a store and therefore is a large contributor to a food retailer’s overall environmental impact.

Currently, no reliable data exists about the use of refrigeration, air conditioning and heating equipment, or on user needs in the Organic Food Retail (OFR)/ small food retail sector. There is a need to get a better understanding of small shop owners' needs, the status quo as well as cooling and heating technology trends (with the focus on refrigeration equipment) used by the OFR sector, small supermarkets (up to 1,000m² sales area) and other food markets across Europe. 

Organic food retail and small shop owners 

This survey among shop owners will help to understand the options and motivation of shop owners for the future introduction of new energy efficient and low GWP equipment in these sectors.

Based on the survey results, shop owners will be provided with a tool to benchmark energy and GHG emission performances for their appliances.

If you are a shop owner, take part in our survey here!
Servicing companies and contractors

This survey will help to understand the nature and scope of RACHP technicians working in OFR/small (food) market segments. The findings will provide a clear picture of the trends in servicing and refrigerant use patterns and also give an overview on the general awareness of using environmentally friendly refrigerants among RACHP technicians.

If you are a RACHP servicing company or contractor, take part in our survey here!

Join us at ATMOsphere Europe!

The 10th annual ATMOsphere Europe conference will be taking place in Warsaw, Poland on 16th & 17th October 2019. The event has free admission for end-users such as food retailers. In a private session for end users only you can learn from others and share experiences in confidence.
Project representatives will be available to meet you at the Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE booth to tell you more about the project activities as well as how you can get involved.

Consult full programme
Register here

About Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE

Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE is a demonstration project with best-practice elements. It addresses 2 EU policy priorities: Climate Governance and Information (CGI) and Climate Change Mitigation (CCM).

Learn more about our project at:

The Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE project has received funding from the EU LIFE Programme.

Get involved 

We welcome your comments, questions or suggestions on how to get involved with Refrigerants, Naturally! for LIFE.
Contact us at

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