Fogel’s Cool R290 Propane-chilled Beer Coolers

This article originally appeared on HydroCarbons 21 on May 6, 2019.

Guatemala-based Fogel is selling propane-cooled beer coolers in North and South America to Anheuser-Busch, part of world’s biggest beer manufacturer, AB InBev.

“We’ve done that for a while,” Federico Barquero Tefel, vice president of commercialization for Fogel said at the NAFEM Show in February. “And everything we’ve forwarded to them has been R290.”

The coolers are used in sports stadiums and at retail outlets in U.S. states that allow branded equipment to be displayed. The units chill the beverages down to 25°F to produce “really cold beer,” he said.

Howard McCray, a manufacturer based in Philadelphia, Pa., owns and distributes Fogel units in the U.S.

When Fogel began selling R290 coolers in 2010, some contained refrigeration circuits in a cassette that could be easily removed for servicing and replaced by another module. But because that model comes with a 12%-18% higher price tag, Fogel largely sells split units.

The cassette models helped to “break the ice” for people concerned about flammability of R290, he said. “The cassette helped introduce [R290] to the market. Now people feel more comfortable and have moved over to the split system.”