Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  12 Dec 2010

FOOD & BEVERAGES: Serco's Friendly ecoFridge Vehicles


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PERISHABLE goods distributors, Fast ‘n Fresh, which falls under the umbrella of Imperial Logistics Refrigeration Services, have taken delivery of three trailers and a rigid body truck ­ all fitted with state-of-the-art eco-Fridges ­ from Serco.

The fridge deal was made directly with ecoFridge in the Ukraine who sent two technicians to South Africa to oversee the fitment of the fridges earlier this year. The installation of the fridges was done at Serco’s Cape Town factory.

The ecoFridge system works by releasing vaporised nitrogen into the load area from an under-slung tank with a capacity of up to 1 000 litres.

Nitrogen used by the system has zero carbon emissions unlike diesel units which produce 2.63kg of carbon for every litre of fuel used.

Leonard Hyman, operations manager for Imperial Logistics Refrigeration Services, says they decided to order the ecoFridge units as reducing the company’s impact on the environment is an issue close to their hearts. “We are continuously looking at ways to reduce, reuse and recycle. EcoFridge offered an opportunity to further reduce our carbon footprint and we felt it our duty to pursue the route.”

We looked to Serco to do the preparations and fitment of the fridges having developed a long standing business relationship with them ­ particularly the Cape Town branch ­ and we worked together to produce the design of a body which conforms to our specific requirements and applications needs.”

Hyman said the vehicles would be used for the distribution of perishable products to Woolworths stores in the greater Cape Town area as well as between Cape Town and Johannesburg. “We plan to extend this to include the greater Durban area and other centres in Gauteng in the near future.”

The vehicles are the company’s first which use nitrogen as the cooling agent. “Our intention now is to fully evaluate the operation of the new vehicles over the months and if they are successful in meeting our needs, we will order more.”

Hyman explained that the vehicles could be operated as mono temperature or multi-temperature units depending on requirements. The smaller units were equipped to carry products at two different temperatures while the larger vehicles had the facility for three different temperatures in the same load.

Fast ‘n Fresh focuses on transport solutions to suit the needs of individual customers and provides primary and secondary multi-temp distribution services for perishable products on a national basis.

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