Refrigeration Boring? I Think Not
Life in an Underappreciated Industry
“Refrigeration = boring.”
That’s what a friend emailed back to me when I told her that I had become the refrigeration editor of The ACHR NEWS.
I had to laugh because it illustrates two things about most humans: they really don’t understand the myriad ways in which refrigeration is important to their lives, and they sure take for granted things that would have been considered miracles a mere generation or two ago.
I remember my mom telling me how excited her family was when they got their first refrigerator. We’re just one generation removed from using iceboxes! (I also seem to remember my mom telling me about how the kids in her old neighborhood would suck on pieces of the salt that was spread on the streets to melt snow in the winter, so it sounds like I missed a really fun period in American history.)
So people don’t appreciate the refrigeration industry and its importance. They don’t stop to think about all the ways refrigeration makes their lives better, from food safety, to pharmaceutical manufacturing, to transportation, to industry, to where and how they live. We’re an industry that’s hidden in plain sight.
But one thing we’re not is a boring industry. Great people taking part in great work is not boring. And change is everywhere: new equipment, new regulations, new refrigerants, new ways of doing things . . . the list goes on and on. And our industry only grows in importance from year to year.
As I toured this year’s AHR Expo and met many of the leaders of the refrigeration industry, one theme kept coming up again and again: this is a very interesting time in this industry. I was advised more than once to buckle up and enjoy the ride, and that sounds like good advice to me. Let’s enjoy it together.