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The cold storage sector and refrigeration solutions

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Bitzer, a German based leading manufacturer of refrigerant compressors is now expanding its footprint in India to support establishment of growing cold food chain industry in the country.

According to Government of India estimates, India currently loses about `44,000Cr worth of food produce annually due to inadequate storage and lack of a cold chain to prevent food decay. In order to boost the setting up of much-needed cold storages, the Government has announced a series of measures. This has led to several cold storage facilities being set up across the country, especially in coastal areas to support the fisheries and seafood and meat & dairy processing industries.

“The Company’s energy efficient products are especially suitable to Indian customers who are increasingly conscious of conservation. The growth expectation for the company in India is 20% year-on-year by 2017. To, increase the service support network, we started India’s third Green Point Compressor Service Centre in Bangalore last year, the next centre is expected to start in Kolkata by mid-April and in Chandigarh by year 2015.”

Apart from the fisheries and meat industries, the demand for cold storage is growing because of allied industries like seed cold storages, dairy products and test chambers. Blast freezing is also a requirement for meat and poultry industry that is recognized as a sunrise industry. As a result, many cold storage facilities have come up across India. As part of the Government’s efforts to augment food storage facilities in the country, 15 new food parks are also envisaged. The entry of multi-nationals like Wal-Mart, Metro, Tesco, Carrefour etc. into the country’s food retail sector is further expected to boost demand for refrigeration and cold storage solutions. The upgrade market is another growing segment, as existing cold chains based on old and inefficient technology are being revamped and retrofitted.

“The quality of the products coupled with elevated levels of technical support and the experience of local contracting companies ensures end-customers are able to focus on their primary businesses without having to worry about refrigeration. The employees undergo intensive training on all types of compressor fault diagnosis and repair organised by the Green Point Service Centres at New Delhi, Navi Mumbai and Bangalore.”

Some of the challenges facing the sector are rising energy costs and limitations in power supply, efficient capacity adaptation and regional specifications. The answers to these problems according to Harvinder. S. Bhatia, Country General Manager, Bitzer India Pvt Ltd are the intelligent compressors that are adaptive and actively monitor operating conditions to ensure they remain within tolerance. He says, “Intelligent compressors are able to adjust the level of refrigeration precisely to the needs, thereby offering energy efficiency and automatically raise an alarm in the event of a deviation in operating conditions. They can also be networked via standard interfaces such as Ethernet and Modbus to exchange data quickly and reliably.”

Company Products & Growth in India

Bitzer India operating in the country since 2007 delivers compression products to major OEM’s as well as major national chains to support refrigeration applications like refrigeration of supermarkets, cooling of manufacturing processes, air conditioning of buildings and cold storage houses.

Some of the new products offered by the company comprise New Ecoline and Varispeed Reciprocating Compressors, Box type Condensing Units, ORBIT 6 Scroll Compressors for R410A and inverter driven CSVH Compact Screw Compressors. They provide demand oriented cooling capacity and part load efficiency and therefore are considered economical in long run. The products also offer large speed range and operating limits, eco-friendly HFC refrigerant use and low sound emissions. The integrated pre-configured frequency inverters are not only simple to install but are safe, reliable and maintenance free.

In addition, company owned Green Point service centres by Bitzer provide servicing and repair as per factory standards and environmental sensitive practices. In order to meet the increasing demand, Bitzer is restructuring its operations in the region to focus on growth. It is already a supplier for several large companies with operation in India, like Wal-Mart, Blue Star, Voltas, Baker Circle, Prime Refrigeration (ETA), Middleby Corporation, Cold Star Logistics, Crystal Logistics, Panasonic India, Coca Cola, International Coil Company etc.

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