Global container shipping specialist Hapag-Lloyd has purchased 3,700 Star Cool Integrated containers as part of its recent Reefer Investments from Maersk Container Industry (MCI), as it bids to maintain and expand its container fleet.
Of these, 1,000 Star Cool units will be chilled by the environmentally friendly R513A refrigerant system, with a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of less than 56 per cent of the commonly used R134A refrigerant.
Eager to support the market adaptation of more environmentally friendly refrigerants, Hapag-Lloyd is the first carrier to widely deploy the low-GWP R513A refrigerant blend recently introduced by MCI.
The R513A charged Star Cool unit is addressing the environmental protection legislation for existing technology platforms introduced with, for example, the F-gas regulations in the EU.
“We are pleased to introduce another low-GWP refrigerant solution in our fleet with the first 1,000 Star Cool Integrated containers,” said Niklas Ohling, senior director at Hapag-Lloyd. “Reducing carbon emissions is a key objective on our sustainability agenda and we believe in the potential of environmentally friendly refrigerants as an important element in achieving this. At the same time, we have ensured in earlier field trials with MCI that the cargo quality and energy efficiency remains unaffected by the new refrigerant.”
“We share the ambition of Hapag-Lloyd to reduce its environmental impact and are happy they again have selected the Star Cool Integrated solution,” noted Søren Leth Johannsen, chief commercial officer at MCI. “It has been our imperative to offer a refrigerant solution that is not only better for the environment, but can also be deployed here and now, in the future, and in existing Star Cool fleets. This protects our customers’ investment and allows for a gradual change to the new technology and to legislation.”
Extending market reach
To meet the increased demand in reefer transport, Hapag-Lloyd selected Controlled Atmosphere (CA) technology for 1,000 Star Cool Integrated containers to expand its ExtraFresh and ExtraFresh Plus services.
The CA technology slows the ripening of fruits and vegetables, allowing them to be transported over longer periods and reach their destination in optimal condition without over-ripening or decaying.
“Working together with MCI, we have been able to refine CA technology to offer our ExtraFresh Plus service,” explained Ohling. “This service enables even extremely sensitive fruit such as blueberries and lychees to be transported to the desired level of quality and degree of ripeness. With these new container orders with MCI, we are broadening our position and investing in expanding our ExtraFresh Plus offering to meet the needs of our customers worldwide.”
“Hapag-Lloyd has been instrumental in spearheading CA services into new commodities such as blueberry and lychee loads,” added Johannsen. “Thanks to our close and agile partnership that spans over a decade, we have been able to test CA technology on new commodities together with interested exporters and growers in Africa and South America.”
The 3,700 40-foot high-cube are currently being produced and delivered from MCI’s manufacturing facilities in China and Chile.