Festival Foods, a Wisconsin-based chain of more than 20 supermarkets, has designed its new Somers, Wisconsin, location with refrigeration equipment from Zero Zone Inc. that is designed to run on Honeywell’s Solstice® N40 (R-448A).

According to Honeywell, Festival Foods is the first supermarket chain to build a new store with refrigeration equipment specifically designed to use Solstice N40.

Solstice N40 is a reduced global warming potential (GWP) hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) blend refrigerant for low- and medium-temperature refrigeration equipment.

Honeywell said following the successful start-up at the Somers location, Festival Foods plans to design all new stores to use Solstice N40.

“We are excited to further our efforts in energy conservation with the addition of this new equipment,” said Mark Skogen, president and CEO, Festival Foods. “By designing our refrigeration systems to work with Solstice N40, we expect to increase the energy efficiency of our Somers location by 3 percent or more when compared to other Festival Foods locations. That's a big win for the environment, and it will lower our energy costs as well."

“Supermarket owners are looking for more energy-efficient and environmentally preferable refrigerants,” said Robert Kebby, global business manager for Honeywell’s commercial refrigeration business. “With superior energy efficiency and GWP that is 68 percent lower than R-404A, Solstice N40 offers supermarkets a solution that can best serve their refrigerant needs while meeting environmental demands.”

“Zero Zone is excited to be working with environmentally conscious food retailers like Festival Foods and industry suppliers like Honeywell to develop and incorporate leading, new refrigerant solutions such as Solstice N40,” said Bruce Hierlmeier, PE, director of regulatory compliance and refrigeration technology, Zero Zone. “R-448A is a viable alternative to R-404A for medium- and low-temperature display cases, providing food retailers with a practical, easy-to-use solution to achieve lower overall energy consumption and lower overall GWP of their retail food stores.”

According to Honeywell, in supermarket trials conducted in the U.S. and Europe, Solstice N40 demonstrated 3 percent lower energy consumption in low-temperature applications and 5 to 16 percent lower energy consumption in medium-temperature applications compared to R404A. Honeywell says it is a near drop-in replacement for R-404A and R-507, and can also be used to replace R-22. It has a GWP of 1,273 and is nonflammable.

Under U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules aimed at phasing out commonly-used high-GWP refrigerants for supermarket refrigeration, R-404A and R-507 are now considered unacceptable in retrofit systems and will be considered unacceptable as of Jan. 1, 2017 for new supermarkets.

For more information on Solstice N40, visit www.honeywell-refrigerants.com