Headquartered in the Netherlands, Action is a fast-growing international non-food discounter, with over 1,400 stores across the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, France, Germany, Austria and Poland. In its stores, the discounter sells more than 6,000 different products, mainly non-food. While offering its customers good quality products at surprisingly low prices, Action continuously explores new ways to reduce its environmental impact, such as the latest initiative.

Creating a circular economy for refrigerants

During the first half of 2019, the two companies collaborated in an exercise to recover R410A refrigerant gas from 12 Action stores which were being refurbished, reusing the reclaimed gas in 10 new Action stores across Europe. This process is certified by Daikin to assure Action of both the quality and quantity of the reclaimed refrigerant, a process endorsed through assessment by an independent laboratory.

The reclaimed refrigerant used has the same quality as virgin refrigerant and meets AHRI700 standards. An independent audit process also ensures that the quantity of reclaimed gas from the Action stores is allocated administratively to the factory charge of the units installed in selected new Action stores. Michiel Coolen, Action Group Construction Manager says: “By setting up this circular economy of refrigerants within our own store network we are able to further reduce our environmental impact. Instead of producing more waste by disposing of the old refrigerant and producing something new, we use what is available. In this way we create a closed circle of refrigerant use within the Action network”

Mr. Toshitaka Tsubouchi, Vice-president of Daikin Europe says: “As an industry, we are only at the start of our journey to create a circular economy of refrigerant supply, usage, recovery and reclamation. We highly value Action and the fact that they are open to take initiatives that will change the retail and HVAC market. We hope to inspire many others to make the same positive choice and to help us to recover the huge quantity of available refrigerant in existing installations.”

Reclaimed Refrigerant Certified stores

Following on from the success of this pilot project, Action and Daikin will recover refrigerant gas from a further 50 Action stores scheduled for refurbishment over the coming years for reuse in new-build stores. In this way, the new Action stores will fully support the circular economy of refrigerants, lowering their environmental impact and avoiding the production of new refrigerants. Through this initiative, Action and Daikin has set a powerful example for all stakeholders, both in retail sector and HVACR industry.