Online electricals retailer AO.com has announced that it will open a new ‘mobile fridge’ recycling plant at its facility in Telford.
The company says it will now be able to process absorption fridges, often referred to as ammonia fridges and frequently used in caravans, motorhomes, boats and hotel rooms, where there is a requirement for low voltage, ultra silent or compact fridges.
The new plant ensures that absorption fridges are recycled in the safest and most environmentally friendly way by removing the ammonia, a process known as degassing.
Prior to the investment, many absorption fridges were exported to the Continent for processing, but the investment means the plant will be able to degass an estimated 60,000 to 70,000 absorption fridges every year.
Commenting on the new facility, AO Recycling director Anthony Sant, said: “At AO we have a simple philosophy of doing the right thing in everything we do. We’ve been previously asked to process ammonia fridges, but our current degassing facilities were not suitable for these types of fridges.”
Mr Sant added: “We decided to invest in order to process them and it was a straight forward decision to do this with the world’s biggest producer of ammonia fridges, Dometic. Their patented plant fits efficiently and effectively into our Telford operation. After being processed using this specialist equipment, the fridges can then be recycled using the same process we use for domestic fridges.”
The installation of the plant will be overseen by Robert Sant, AO Recycling’s Managing Director at the Shropshire operation, which is home to Europe’s biggest fridge recycling processing machine.
The announcement also comes not long before AO plans to open a second fridge and LDA recycling site in a multi-million pound investment in the South East, which it plans to open in 2019.
Once built, AO says it will have capacity to process around 40% of the fridges collected in the UK. An announcement on the exact location of the plant is expected to be made later this year with construction due to start at the end of the year.
Other recyclers of ammonia fridges are understood to also operate in the UK.