New EU regulation for commercial refrigerated display cabinets - Ecodesign criteria and Energy Efficiency Index (EEI)

Per Henrik Pedersen

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New EU regulation for commercial refrigerated display cabinets - Ecodesign criteria and Energy Efficiency Index (EEI)

Ecodesign criteria
The Ecodesign Regulation stipulates that from 1 March 2021, it is prohibited to sell products with an EEI > 100, and from 1 September 2023 the limit is set to products with an EEI > 80.

For ice cream freezers, the requirements are even stricter. From 1 March 2021, it is prohibited to sell products with an EEI > 80, and from 1 September 2023, the prohibition applies to products with an EEI > 50.

Furthermore, it is a requirement that the disassembly of components is possible when scrapping a product. It must also be possible to repair the product by replacing thermostats, starter relays, circuit boards, software, temperature sensors, lamps, and sealing strips. The manufacturer must be able to deliver spare parts for eight years after the production of the product.

More details on this are available in the new regulations.

Available technical documentation, which verifies the declared values in connection with e.g. market surveillance, must be prepared as well.

Determination of EEI 
The Energy Efficiency Index (EEI) is determined as follows:


AE: Annual energy consumption in kWh

SAE: Standard annual energy consumption in kWh.

The SAE for a product category is determined by the following algorithm, where Y expresses the size of the unit, and the constants M and N are characteristic for the product category:

SAE = (M+N*Y)*365*C*P

A factor P, which is 1.0, has been introduced, except for plugin supermarket display cabinets where P = 1.10. This means that plug-in supermarket display cabinets are allowed to consume 10% more energy than remote display cabi­nets.

factor C, which is 1.0, has been introduced, except for certain supermarket display cabinets and vending machines. The factor C corrects for temperature classes, and it ranges from 0.82 to 1.15. See more details about this in the new regulation.

The size of the appliance, Y; for beverage coolers, ice cream freezers, and vending machines, volume in liters is used as measurement for the size of the appliance. Moreover, gross volume is used for beverage coolers, and net volume is used for ice cream freezers and vending machines. Beverage coolers and ice cream freezers designed for a hot climate are allowed to consume a little more energy. For further information, please see the regulations.

For other products, e.g. supermarket display cabinets and ‘gelato’ ice cream machines, the Total Display Area (TDA) is used in m2 (instead of volume)

Suppliers of commercial refrigerated display cabinets are obliged to provide relevant information for each product, which i.a. includes:

  • Type of appliance
  • Model identification
  • Name and address of the supplier
  • Size of product (volume or total display area (TDA]]
  • Temperature class or temperature range
  • Ambient conditions
  • Energy Efficiency Index (EEI]
  • Energy Efficiency Class (A, B,...or G].
  • Obligations 

At the same time, all product information must be registered in the European database EPREL, which allows manufacturers, users and authorities to compare products.

It is the opinion of Danish Technological Institute that the new standards are quite precise and specific, and this means that the same rules apply to everyone. This provides a competitive advantage for those suppliers who have good and energy efficient products.