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Issue Date: Vol. 49, No.12, December 2009, Posted On: 12/14/2009

Coke Commits To Climate-Friendly Refrigeration

Emily Jed
Coca-Cola, The Coca-Cola Company, Coke, Greanpeace, climate-friendly refrigeration, hydrofluorocarbon-free, HFC-free, PlantBottle, vending, vending machine, vending business, vending operator, vendor, vending route, soda machine, pop vender, cold drinks, packaging trends, foodservice, coffee service, recycling, beverage industry

ATLANTA -- Coca-Cola Co. announced that 100% of its new vending machines and coolers will be hydrofluorocarbon-free by 2015. Using HFC-free refrigerant will reportedly generate 99% fewer direct greenhouse emissions than those created by legacy equipment.

In 2010, the soft drink giant and its bottlers plan to install a minimum of 150,000 units of HFC-free equipment, in line with its goal to purchase 50% of all new coolers and vending machines without HFCs by 2012.

Coke said it has invested more than $50 million in research and development to advance its use of climate-friendly cooling technologies. It has approximately 10 million coolers and vending machines around the world and currently employs two HFC-free solutions: hydrocarbon refrigeration in smaller refrigeration equipment and carbon dioxide in larger units.

Its 100% CFC-free commitment is a collaborative effort with Greenpeace that began in 2000 when the environmental organization challenged Coca-Cola to go HFC-free in all of the equipment it supplied to the Olympic Games in Sydney. By 2006, Coca-Cola was using HFC-free technology at Olympic venues. And for the past five years, Greenpeace and Coca-Cola have continued to collaborate on a cost-effective alternative to HFCs.

In addition to its refrigerant gas commitment, Coca- Cola developed a proprietary energy management system that it says delivers energy savings of up to 35%. It has placed more than 1.7 million of these units around the world. In 2006, the company completed the transition to HFC-free insulation foam for all purchases of new refrigeration equipment.
Recently, Coca-Cola began the global rollout of its PlantBottle (see story here). Coke also plans to build 15 energy-efficient bottling plants in Europe.

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