Ahead of the game with new natural refrigerant technology

M+B Backwaren in the town of Olfen in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany recently decided to upgrade its chemical to natural refrigeration technology with new CO2 systems from KOMA, the company is now ready for the future within the sustainable food industry.


M+B Backwaren, Olfen, Germany


Became future proof with natural refrigerants during upscaling.

Stefan Weiss

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Discovering the KOMA CO2 systems

In 2017, M+B Backwaren found itself at a technical crossroads. Upgrades were needed for both its oven and refrigeration technology to satisfy today’s product quality, energy consumption, and user-friendliness requirements. So, Berthold Brinkert sat down with investment advisor Mr. Heuermann of Ebäcko Münster, and together, they began working on a plan. They looked carefully at which refrigeration systems were needed and drew up a specification for the contract award. ‘We looked at what had been produced for several bakeries by various suppliers and obtained quotes’, recalls Brinkert.

Following a 2018 visit to two companies that use KOMA systems, including one with CO2 refrigeration, it became clear – relatively quickly – that a CO2 booster system was what was needed. Looking back, Brinkert concludes that KOMA’s impressive technology and customer-friendly quotation phase were the main reasons for awarding the contract to KOMA. ‘We had an excellent, trusting, and open re+ationship with everyone at KOMA from the very outset,’ explains Brinkert. ‘Even if the technology alone were sufficient to come to a decision, the service and understanding of those who were looking after our individual requirements were what really clinched it.’

The decision to opt for KOMA was finally taken at IBA 2018 in Munich. ‘We actually had the final meeting at the airport because we needed to catch our flight,’ adds Brinkert, smiling.


KOMA Dielen Schocker


The advantage when constructing a CO2 system is the funding options that are available on account of the energy-saving potential of the system. With the support of Andreas Kötter of energy consultancy Cuekk, they carried out the calculations and submitted the funding applications. Subsidies of 20 - 40% of the overall costs can be obtained, depending on the system, company, and other factors. This funding alone can cover the additional costs incurred by a CO2 system, but with the future-proofing that it can provide, it is worth spending more. For further information, see ‘Why CO2 industrial refrigeration?’ in the information box.

Improving the plans

The original plans by Ebäcko were largely adopted, but in liaison with both the contractor and technical advisor Markus Heuermann of Ebäcko Münster, were expanded further and optimized based on the experiences of planners at KOMA. ‘The changes all made sense,’ explains Brinkert. ‘We quickly concluded that we were working with real professionals.’ One of Brinkert’s aims was for the new refrigeration systems to use less energy than the old systems. The medium-term goal is to increasingly shift overnight work to daytime hours. This will not only reduce the need for unsociable night-time work but will also allow the photovoltaic systems mounted on the roof of the production hall to supply some of the power needed at times of higher load, e.g. when loading the systems and cooling products. 100% of the electricity required for daily production is currently provided by the expanded photovoltaic system.


CO2 Central booster from KOMA

Future partner

The new network system from KOMA has allowed M+B Backwaren to increase the refrigeration area and to integrate existing systems into the network, helping to reduce costs. KOMA’s foresighted and requirements-focused planning has helped to optimize processes and increasingly shift overnight work to daytime hours. Installing additional reserve pipes will allow the refrigeration system to easily be expanded in the future, with very little construction required. ‘I am confident that in KOMA we have found a partner who not only supports you with planning and construction but who also has lots of ideas and suggestions to help arrive at a good all-round solution’, says Brinkert.

Why CO2 industrial refrigeration?

Refrigerants are categorized with a ‘GWP value’ as a means of environmental protection. The GWP value defines the global warming potential, or the potential of a refrigerant to contribute to global warming. The higher this value, the greater the risk that a refrigerant will have a negative impact on our climate. The use of refrigerants with certain GWP values is being restricted in connection with the EU objective to gradually reduce greenhouse gas emissions in 2020, 2022, and 2030. The use of refrigerants with a GWP of over 2500 has already been prohibited in new systems since the start of 2020, and maintenance works are only permitted using a recycled refrigerant supply. The permitted GWP for new systems is being gradually reduced. Services that use the R404A refrigerant, which is still in common use, will be prohibited from 2030. These refrigeration systems will need to be gradually decommissioned or converted. Manufacturers and suppliers are also limited in the use and distribution of refrigerants that are harmful to the environment. The average GWP of the totality of all refrigerants circulating in the market has gradually reduced over the years.

CO2 has a GWP value of 1

It makes sense to use CO2 as a refrigerant if only for the future security that its very low GWP value offers. There are also other advantages, such as the extremely low cost of CO2 when compared with other refrigerants. Consequently, CO2 is a future-proof and inexpensive refrigerant that, thanks to KOMA’s research and development, is optimally aligned to the refrigeration needs of bakeries.


"I am confident that in KOMA we have found a partner who not only supports you with planning and construction, but who also has lots of ideas and suggestions to help arrive at a good all-round solution"

Berthold Brinkert

Owner - M+B Backwaren

Stefan Weiss

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