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Celebrating World Refrigeration Day

June 26 marks a very special day for the refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump industries. World Refrigeration Day has brought the global “Cooling Family” together like never before. 

It is truly remarkable how an idea, which first germinated in the mind of a British refrigeration consultant, has been received, supported and acknowledged in every corner of the world. 

The day may coincide with the birthday of William Thomson, better known as Lord Kelvin, the Scottish-born father of thermodynamics and creator of the Kelvin scale, but June 26 should recognise all the pioneers who contributed to the advancement of refrigeration and air conditioning.

There were so many who had a huge hand in the invention and development of today’s cooling technology, from Ibn Sina, the 11th century Persian chemist and physicist, through Americans Oliver Evans, Jacob Perkins and John Gorrie, the Australian James Harrison, Kelvin’s fellow Scot William Cullen, the German engineer Carl von Linde, and, later, air conditioning pioneer Willis Carrier. There are many more. 

The technology continues to evolve, efficiencies increase and methods found to reduce the environmental impact of a technology which is relied upon in so many aspects of daily life. Many of these have been incremental changes, the ideas and breakthroughs of so many whose efforts are largely unknown and unrecognised even by those in this industry, let alone the wider world. 

And that is what World Refrigeration Day is really all about – to raise awareness. As Steve Gill, who first planted the idea for World Refrigeration Day, said: “It is intended that World Refrigeration Day will serve as a means of raising awareness and understanding to the general public of the significant role that the refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pumps industry and technology play in modern life and society.”

Not that the idea of a special industry day is a new one, but getting a consensus for a fixed date from organisations around the world certainly is.

“Refrigeration, air conditioning, and heat pump technologies and applications have evolved out of a human need for food, comfort and thermal processes, with a history dating back centuries, however it remains a longstanding frustration for those working within the industry that it is not widely recognised that modern life could not exist without it. Nor is there any appreciation by wider society for the skills and knowledge employed on a daily basis by industry professionals.” 

All across the world, organisations, companies and individuals are organising events to mark the first World Refrigeration Day. Some of these are listed below. If you have others you would like us to add, email us at [email protected].


Supermarket tours
June 26

Retailer Woolworth is celebrating World Refrigeration Day by throwing open its the plant room doors at two of its most technically advanced supermarkets and inviting the public to look around. The event will run on the afternoon of June 26 at one store in western Melbourne, and another in western Sydney. Both use cutting-edge transcritical CO2 refrigeration systems.

The open day, supported by RACCA, AIRAH and RMIT, is open to anyone interested in getting a look at the inner workings of supermarket refrigeration and air conditioning system. It is being heavily promoted among schools, in the hopes of raising awareness among young people about the HVAC&R industry and the opportunities it offers.

As well as providing an overview of the HVAC&R industry, the afternoon session will include a technician describing a day in the life of refrigeration engineer, and refrigeration and air conditioning educators talking about the training they do.

Further information and to register here.

Apprentice fund

Beijer Ref company Kirby is using World Refrigeration Day to launch a fund to support apprentices and strengthen the technical skills of the HVAC&R industry.

As part of the fund raising activities, all supporters will have the opportunity on June 26 to purchase a Kirby t-shirt for $10 from a Kirby branch. The t-shirts carry the message Strengthening our Trade – the essence of the fund’s purpose.

All profits will be directed to the Kirby Apprentice Fund. In addition, Kirby account customers will have the opportunity to contribute a voluntary refrigerant levy to the fund, which will also be fully invested back into the industry for the provision of tools and training.

To maximise opportunities from the fund, all HVAC&R trade apprentices are encouraged to register their details here.

Burkina Faso 

New Cold System Sarl

The first World Refrigeration Day will be celebrated at the New Cold System Sarl under the banner of “Cold for the Socio-Economic Development of Africa”. It is organised in collaboration with AITF-B and APFC. Further information here.


The role of refrigeration: today’s potential and the opportunities of tomorrow
26 June
Casale Monferrato, Castello dei Paleologi, Piazza Castello, 15033 Casale Monferrato, Italy.

Free-to-attend seminar organised by Centro Studi Galileo and the Association of Italian Cold Technicians to raise public awareness about the key role that refrigeration plays in our society today.

For further information and to book, click here.


Technical talk
ASHRAE Singapore chapter
Zero-ODP, Low-GWP Technology Options for Refrigerants
19.00 to 21.00
Singapore Polytechnic Graduates’ Guild (SPGG)

Speaker: Lim Puay-Khim, technical service consultant, Chemours.
For further information and booking details, click here.


World Day of Refrigeration
June 26
Ateneo de Madrid

The Spanish associations AEFYT (Association of Cold Companies and their Technologies) and AFEC (Association of Air conditioning Equipment Manufacturers), with the collaboration of AFAR (Association of Andalusian Manufacturers of Refrigeration), will hold a special celebration of World Refrigeration Day to raise the profile of the industry.

This will include a talk on the history of refrigeration and discussions on the value of refrigeration, its challenges and sustainability.

Further information here.


Refrigeration installation visits
June 26

The East Midlands branch of the Energy Institute has organised visits to two key Sainsbury’s refrigeration installations in Leicester and Northampton. 

Sainsbury’s Triple Zero store in Leicester was opened in 2013 and together with Weymouth is one of the Sainsbury’s two Triple Zero stores (zero carbon, water and waste). It incorporates CHP, a PV array and CO2 refrigeration with numerous energy saving features.

The retailers latest 400,000m³ distribution centre in Pineham, Northampton, is one of the largest single chamber facilities in the UK. Power comes from a CHP plant and the refrigeration is provided by a two stage ammonia system with an absorption chiller utilising exhaust heat rejected by the CHP. The installation is said to incorporate many energy, carbon and water saving initiatives.

For further information and to book, click here.

Trane UK
June 26
09:00 to 12:00
Trane UK, Basingstoke

In the true spirit of World Refrigeration Day, Trane UK is playing host to around 30 pupils from the local Costello School in Basingstoke. The session includes descriptions by Trane personnel on what it means to be a refrigeration and air conditioning service engineer or sales engineer. The event also includes demonstrations and exercises.

TCS&D Exhibition
East of England Arena
25-26 June

A World Refrigeration Day Pavilion at the Temperature Controlled Storage and Distribution Exhibition at the East of England Arena will feature live broadcast talks focusing on different aspects of the RACHP industry hosted by ACRIB.

SkillFridge competition
Practical Refrigeration Training Centre
Burnley, Lancs
June 26
09.00 to 16.45

The Practical Refrigeration Training Centre (PRTC) is hosting a heat of the national SkillFridge competition as part of its celebration of World Refrigeration Day.

Alongside the competition, PRTC is hosting a breakout area to provide information, advice and guidance to raise industry awareness. This will be supported and attended by Practical Refrigeration Training Centre, Pendle Refrigeration Wholesale, Controls UK, The Skills Company and East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce – Low Carbon, the Institute of Refrigeration and the ACR News Magazine.

Those wishing to attend should contact the Training Centre prior to attendance confirming the name/s of persons attending. Places are limited to a maximum of two persons per company. 

Contact information: Tamsin Greenbank – [email protected]; Ian Cross – [email protected]

Open Day
Derbyshire Refrigeration, Nottingham
June 26

Supplier demos/offers, free gauge, scales calibrations, BBQ and refreshments, games, quiz, and more. Further information here.


RefriAmericas Conference & Expo 
Miami Airport Convention Center
June 26 and 27

For over 15 years, Latin America’s RefriAmericas Conference & Expo has been bringing together thousands of professionals of the heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HVAC/R) industry for educational programmes, presentations by industry experts, networking opportunities, and brand name vendor exhibits.

This year it will also celebrate the first annual World Refrigeration Day on June 26.

Admission to the expos is free and the conference portion of the event has an admission fee. Anyone wishing to attend the conference or the expo must register on the website

Join a webinar on World Refrigeration Day

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