PrimeLINE reefer units
bolster green initiatives
of Chiquita banana fleet
Sep 16, 2009 10:00 AM
Citing energy and weight savings and overall operational improvements, Chiquita Brands International is adding 1,250 PrimeLINE container refrigeration units from Carrier Transicold to its banana fleet. Carrier Transicold is a part of Carrier Corp, a business unit of United Technologies Corp.
Designed to reduce environmental impact and lifecycle cost, the PrimeLINE units acquired by Chiquita are all equipped with QUEST power-saving mode. This control software enables further energy savings by intelligently cycling refrigeration on and off, based on temperature limits designed for specific perishables.
Reducing energy requirements not only cuts fuel consumption, but also provides a proportionate decrease in emissions related to shipboard energy production. This lends itself well to Chiquita’s green transportation initiatives, which focus on reducing carbon emissions and recently netted Chiquita the 2009 Circle of Excellence Award from the Distribution Business Management Association.
Speed of pulldown is another advantage. Juan Guell, equipment director for Chiquita, said, “Versus an older container unit, the PrimeLINE unit can reduce the pulldown time by half.”
The new PrimeLINE units will be used on routes from Central America, 95% of which are destined for North American ports, where Chiquita banana containers are transferred from ship directly to truck chasses for inland delivery.
Chiquita’s new custom-engineered 40-foot steel containers are heavier than the aluminum boxes they replace, but the gain is offset by the PrimeLINE unit’s lighter weight, meaning no compromise to the number of pallets Chiquita can load in each container.
As a 100% Carrier fleet, Chiquita has a mix of ThinLINE reciprocating units and EliteLINE scroll units. From a maintenance perspective, the similarity between the PrimeLINE and EliteLINE units was an advantage, Guell said. “Very few components change, so we don’t have to inventory a lot of different spare parts.”
For more information, visit www.container.carrier.com.
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