Given the fast pace of change in the sector, it can be a challenge keeping your facility compliant with cold storage regulations.
As environmentally-friendly processes become a priority for regulators, key players in the industry are predicting major changes to cold storage regulations. One example is the interest taken by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)in the global warming potential of refrigerants used in cooling systems.
While many facilities use sophisticated refrigerants such as hydrofluorocarbons, the EPA wants to phase them out in favour of natural refrigerants that have less environmental impact. According to Ted Kohlenberger of refrigeration specialist National Resource Management (NRM), refrigerants such as ammonia, carbon dioxide, propane, butane and methane are seeing a resurgence.
complying with cold storage regulations
They may not be as sophisticated or cost effective, but these refrigerants comply with probable future cold storage regulations. Other changes to cold storage regulations include the enforcement of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
In order to comply, cold storage companies will have to collect more and better data from their facilities. This data can be gathered using systems such as temperature monitoring solutions, which are an extra cost to businesses. However there are long-term benefits that outweigh the short-term outlay.
Not only do these systems allow your facility to comply with cold storage regulations, but the data they gather can be used to improve operations, performance and profitability. While compliance is necessary to stay in line with the latest cold storage regulations, it is also an opportunity for forward-thinking companies to look for creative ways to outperform their competitors.
Another example of this is the possible implementation of a control measure to limit the stationary operation of internal combustion engine-driven transport refrigeration units (TRUs) in California. As authorities encourage cold storage companies to build more environmentally-friendly infrastructure, such as zero and near-zero emission transport refrigeration systems, the costs of compliance could be a worry. However if a company invests in next-generation technology and infrastructure today, it will be better placed to benefit when more efficient zero and near-zero emission systems become widely available.
Cold storage regulations may be changing, but change brings opportunity. Using compliance to drive improvements at your facilities gives your company the best chance of forging ahead in a competitive market.
At A-N-C Cold Storage Construction, we take pride in our deep knowledge of the latest regulatory and technological changes. Download your free cold storage design guide to learn more about designing and building cold storage facilities.