Keeping cold, colder


BASF polyurethanes help manufacturers meet the high standards retailers and consumers demand more cost effectively than ever before. Multi-purpose industrial refrigerators that are longer and deeper, including aisle-length freezers, open vegetable coolers, or slide top, and floor-to-ceiling beverage refrigerators.


Rigid foam systems from BASF have been developed to meet the spectrum of design demands, while providing outstanding insulation and sealing solutions, maximizing space and efficiency.


For structural parts, our high-strength, wear-resistant plastics often outperform metal in applications such as hinges and handles.


The challenge of the cold chain


Your pizza has just been deep-frozen in the commercial kitchen and is about to start its journey to the consumer's freezer—a journey of about 75 days. The challenge is to keep it at -20 degrees Fahrenheit from the kitchen's freezer to the consumer's, via the warehouse, the truck and the supermarket's freezer chest. Fresh frozen is -20F, not more and not less. And keep to strict standards of eco-efficiency at all times.


The Eco-Efficiency Analysis is a sustainability assessment tool that yields a holistic comparison of the economic and environmental impact products and processes by looking at the entire lifecycle. Using the tool, BASF specialists from Lemförde, together with the Ö-ko-Institut (Institute for Applied Ecology) in Freiburg, Germany, have examined the eco-efficiency of the cold chain to determine the differences when insulating materials of different thicknesses are used in freezer warehouses or freezer trucks where frozen pizza is stored or transported.


The result? If all the storage facilities, freezer chests and transport vehicles were insulated with polyurethane rigid foam at 60 millimeters thickness, they would save 16 times more energy than the energy used to produce the insulation—in the first seven days that the appliances are in service. After a year, the optimal thickness polyurethane insulation will save 1040 times more energy than the amount used to produce it.