Veg supplier signs up to purchase fleet of solar and battery-powered refrigeration units

Sunswap has teamed up with Staples Vegetables to supply 100 per cent of the brassica grower’s new transport refrigeration units in 2024.

Staples grows a range of brassicas

Staples grows a range of brassicas

The two businesses ran a successful 12-day trial in July, using Sunswap’s solar and battery-powered TRU – Endurance – to fulfil Staples’ delivery cycles, with a configuration of the standard-speed charger and the four (out of a possible six) module battery.

By replacing the emissions from a traditional diesel TRU, Sunswap’s trial effectively removed 225.6kg of tailpipe carbon dioxide emission (CO2) and 2.1kg of nitrogen oxide emission (NOx), the company said.

Sunswap’s trial data projections indicate that over the next decade, Staples’ fleet of Endurance TRUs will remove 2.4 tonnes of NOx and 256 tonnes of tailpipe CO2, saving 227 tonnes of wider CO2 emissions overall.

Over the course of a year, the CO2 emission saving per TRU equates to the usage of 18 typical UK cars, and the NOx emission saving equates to the usage of 21 average Euro VI-compliant diesel cars, Sunswap added.

Sunswap claimed that Staples’ investment will see the producer reduce its 10-year total cost-of-ownership by 27 per cent, and operational expenditure by 78 per cent.

Staples managing director Vernon Read said: ”Myself and the Staples team are delighted to commit to upgrading our technology for the benefit of lowering our costs – and lowering cost to the environment. It has been a pleasure to work with Sunswap so far and we eagerly anticipate the installation date, when we get our very own electric TRUs complete with new solar panel-topped trailers.” 

Sunswap CEO Michael Lowe added: ”We’re excited to be supplying Staples Vegetables with their transport fridges from 2024, particularly as they are such an ambitious and forward-thinking distributor. We were pleased to conclude successful trials in July that proved and exhibited our unit’s versatility for raw foods, and we look forward to seeing our units on the road with Staples full-time.”