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Anticipating the Next Changes for Commercial Refrigerators

In March 2021, two new European regulations will be introduced for commercial refrigerators, setting energy consumption limits and specifying requirements for labeling and provisioning additional product information.

Commercial refrigerator aisle

August 12, 2020

Written by: Elena Finocchi, Industry Marketing Manager HVAC/R

Europe has a big objective: become climate neutral by 2050, as stated by the European Green Deal. Within the set of actions aimed at promoting the efficient use of resources, investing in environmentally friendly technologies will be necessary to support industry innovation.

Among the different set of actions defined to reach the objective mentioned, new product categories will also be affected by energy efficiency regulations. The result is that commercial refrigerators with a direct sales function will also now have to show an energy label as professional and household ones do.

The new European regulations introduced for commercial refrigerators will set energy consumption limits and specify requirements for labelling and provisioning additional product information:

  • Energy Efficiency Regulation (EU) 2019/2018
  • Eco-design Regulation (EU) 2019/2024

 The previously mentioned European Eco-design and Energy Labelling regulations will come into force in March 2021.

These represent a novelty for the commercial refrigeration industry because — until now —no obligation existed in the energy field. But starting March 1, 2021, before placing any products belonging to the categories subject to regulation in the market, it will be necessary to perform energy tests, apply a new energy label and load energy related information into a new online database called the European Product Database for Energy Labelling (EPREL).

The product categories impacted by the regulations are electric mains-operated refrigerating appliances with direct sales functions intended for displaying and selling of foodstuffs and used in supermarkets, bars, shops and ice-cream parlors. What distinguishes all those refrigerators is that they are directly accessible through open sides or through one or more doors or drawers that imply an interaction with final consumers that can be both direct or with assisted serving.

Here is a list of all the products categories in scope:

  • Refrigerated display cabinets
  • Refrigerated vending machines
  • Ice cream freezers
  • Ice cream scooping cabinets
  • Commercial beverage coolers

With a global network of laboratories and decades of international technical and regulatory expertise, we can help you understand the changing regulations and assist you in testing and verifying product compliance so you can make product adjustments before the coming changes and be ready for the new requirements.

Our performance and energy efficiency laboratory in Italy is a leading European testing operation. With our large, state-of-the-art climatic test chamber — specifically developed for professional and commercial refrigeration products — we can test the performance and efficiency of products under high-stress conditions.

We clear the path to energy efficiency compliance, leaving your company the time you need to produce next-generation products keeping you ahead of the curve. 


Contact us so we can support you in being innovative and environmentally friendly and anticipate the change!

Brochure "Full Compliance for Commercial and Professional Refrigeration"

With broad business intelligence and a deep understanding of the regulatory landscape, UL helps thousands of manufacturers make informed decisions to demonstrate the safety and compliance of their products, deliver high-quality and high-performing devices, and enhance sustainability with a strong focus on the needs of manufacturers.  

We provide independent, comprehensive certification, testing and verification services at state-of-the-art laboratories for household, professional and commercial appliances and refrigeration (HVAC/R) appliances of all sizes and purposes.  

From refrigerated display cabinets and freezers, to professional refrigerators and ice-makers, we can test and certify a variety of commercial and professional refrigeration products.  

What kind of test and certification can we provide? Safety, Performance, Sanitation, Energy Efficiency and Cybersecurity are just few of them.

Download our brochure:


Full Compliance for Commercial and Professional Refrigeration

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