NatRef Technologies Among First Contributions to Philippines Cold Chain Development Initiative

By Devin Yoshimoto, Oct 20, 2021, 03:48 3 minute reading

The contributions include CO2 and propane refrigeration systems for transport and food retail applications as well as knowledge, expertise and logistics.

Manila-Philippines ©Yooran-Park

CO2 (R744) and propane (R290) refrigeration systems are among the first contributions made by technology suppliers to the Cold Chain Innovation Hub (CCI-Hub), a Philippines-based center for sustainable food cold chain technology exhibitions and training.

The contributions were announced in a webinar held on September 27.

CCI-Hub was launched in 2019 as part of an initiative to upgrade the food cold chain in the Philippines. This “Global Partnership for Improving the Food Cold Chain in the Philippines” initiative is jointly led by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Filipino Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). ATMOsphere, publisher of this website, is one of the project’s key executing partners.

The webinar, "CCI-Hub Contributors Session," featured presentations from the first confirmed international and Philippines-based companies that will be contributing sustainable food cold chain technology equipment, knowledge or expertise to the CCI-Hub facility. The facility will be built at the Philippines’ TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Development Authority) Regional Training Center in Manila.

The presentations featured representatives from AHT Cooling Systems Asia Pacific; Centro Nippon Fruehauf Cooltech Inc., a Philippines-based truck body manufacturer and assembler; Cold Front Technologies Asia, a Philippines-based refrigeration system contractor and installer; Embraco Nidec; Epta; and Productbloks, a Vienna, Austria-based technology company focused on developing energy-efficient, green technologies for the refrigerated transport logistics industry.

“We can see that R290 [equipment] will be the future for the Asian countries, especially because it is very suitable to hot climates. We can see that it is growing very rapidly,” said Sumitra Eksithichai, Sales Director for AHT Cooling Systems Asia Pacific. AHT will be contributing R290 plug-in and waterloop systems to the CCI-Hub.

"We're very open to trying out new technologies such as CO2, R290, variable frequency drives and waterloop systems as well, and really seeing how we can move the industry forward in terms of not only a greener future, but also to a less energy[-intensive one]," said Emilio Gonzalez La’O, President of Cold Front Technologies Asia. Cold Front Technologies Asia will be contributing its technical expertise, labor and logistics to the CCI-Hub.

“The cooling capacity of hydrocarbon gases and [thus] the energy efficiency of hydrocarbon units [are] definitely better than comparable HFC units, which means lower electricity consumption,” said Roberto Da Pra, Export Sales Manager for Epta. Epta will be contributing its hydrocarbon-based freezer and chiller display cases to the CCI-Hub.

To see the rest of the contributors, click here.

The CCI-Hub will be hosting a second webinar on October 27, where several more contributors will be speaking about their offerings to the CCI-Hub. Registration is free and open now. To register, click here.

3D video rendering of facility released

The CCI-Hub has also released a draft 3D video rendering of the physical space on TESDA's Manila campus.

See the video here.

The video was created by TESDA, and the preparation of the space is “currently underway” with “more details to be announced in the next few weeks,” according to a statement.

Focus on food cold chain

The “Global Partnership for Improving the Food Cold Chain in the Philippines” project aims to identify, develop and stimulate the application of low-carbon, energy-efficient refrigeration technologies and business practices throughout the food cold chain to increase food safety and food security.

It is funded by US$2 million from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), with US$25 million in co-financing (in-kind, grants and loans).

The CCI-Hub will serve as the project’s main platform for providing an ecosystem of technical resources, training, knowledge sharing and stakeholder collaboration. Last year, TESDA was announced as the official national entity that will host the CCI-Hub at its offices.

For more information on the project, visit the CCI-Hub website here. Those interested in staying up to date on project announcements can sign up for the official newsletter.

CCI-Hub is continuing to seek industry contributions to the project. Those interested can view details here or contact Jan Dusek, Head of Global Partnership for the CCI-Hub, at

By Devin Yoshimoto

Oct 20, 2021, 03:48

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