First Round of FY2018 Natural Refrigerant Subsidy Recipients Announced in Japan


The Japan Ministry of Environment (MOE) announced today the first round of companies to be awarded subsidies for natural refrigerant system installations for FY2018 in the cold storage, food processing, and retail sectors.

A total of 98 companies with plans to install natural refrigerants in a combined total of 139 locations around Japan have been awarded subsidies in the following sectors:

Cold storage: 55 companies at 60 locations; Food processing: 19 companies at 19 locations, and; Food retail: 24 companies at 60 locations. Notable recipients in the commercial sector include some of Japan’s largest convenience store retailers such as retail and logistics giants Aeon, COOP, Family Mart, Lawson and Yamato Transport.

COOP, Lawson, and Aeon, among other end users shared the success stories they achieved as a result of previous subsidies granted at this year’s ATMOsphere Japan conference last February.

In the cold storage and food processing sectors, notable recipients include some of Japan’s largest consumer food and drink brands such as Asahi Breweries, Kewpie, Meiji, Morinaga Milk, and Maruha Nichiro as well as large cold storage service providers Yokohama Reito and Nichirei Logistics, among others.

Yokohama Reito has been a very active leader in installing natural refrigerant systems in their facilities, installing CO2 condensing units and NH3/CO2 cascade systems at its newest facility, the Tokyo Haneda Distribution Center, in February of this year.

In addition, the Japanese Ministry of Environment has announced that applications are now being accepted for the second round of subsidies to be granted this fiscal year.

The second round will only be available for new convenience store installations.

Kigali driving Japanese government to expand subsidy market reach

The renewal of the Japan MOE subsidy scheme, officially titled ‘subsidies to acclerate the introduction of energy-efficient natural refrigerant equipment for the realisation of a non-freon, low carbon emission society’, was confirmed earlier this year to the amount of ¥6.4 billion (€47 million).

In the previous fiscal year, natural refrigerant subsidies were only available for cold storage businesses. However, on 1 April, subsidies for the food retail and food manufacturing sectors were reinstated for FY 2018.

“Because of Kigali, we decided to expand the sectors and budgeted amount for the market to accelerate the uptake of natural refrigerant technology,” said Yasuhiro Baba, director of the office of fluorocarbons control policy in the Japanese Ministry of the Environment.

“I hope that the market will use this opportunity to proceed with natural refrigerants.” By Devin Yoshimoto