World Refrigeration Day is a chance for us to focus the public attention on the industry
You will see this month in the magazine that we are devoting a lot of space to World Refrigeration Day.
Some of you seasoned industry folk may well be reading this with a raised eyebrow, thinking ‘We’ve got Brexit going on, surely there are bigger things to deal with?”
Reader, let me make a confession. When I first heard about the plans to inaugurate a celebratory day for the cooling industry, my innate journalistic scepticism also kicked in. Nice idea I thought, and of course RAC will cover it, but we have special days coming at us left, right and centre, so do we need another one?
Some of these days have become very well-established – who of you with kids has not had to fashion a costume for World Book Day (March 7)? Others are important and worthy, such as National Dementia Day on September 8 and World Cancer Day on February 4. Very important causes. But where do you stand on National Banana Day on April 11? Or for those of a sensitive disposition, Introverts Week starting March 18 (I like to think that’s because introverts need a couple of days to build up to celebrating).
But then I had a revelation as to why this industry needs World Refrigeration Day to become a fixture every June 26 - it’s all about recognition. What such days undoubtedly do is to focus attention from the public.
And if there is one thing that the cooling industry can do with, it’s more attention. We have been trying for years to overcome the challenge that, against other industries, we are a relatively small sector, but yet what we do is so very, very important and we don’t get to shout about it enough to the very people who use it.
To name an obvious one: Forget all the Brexit scare stories about potential food shortages and imagine what would happen to our food supply if the refrigeration contractors went on strike for a few weeks. And we could all name loads more examples – from the AC in a heat wave to the refrigeration in the mortuaries.
In the developing world, the potential impact is even more massive, as the need is growing so fast. The fact that the UN will be supporting World Refrigeration Day in a big way is surely partly because they can see how emphasising the essential contribution of cooling in the countries of Africa and Southern Asia will help in winning hearts and minds of governments, the NGOs and potential investors.
So I think the cooling industry can use ‘our day’ as a way of shouting about all the vital work. Whereas events like the Cooling Awards are a time-honoured way to demonstrate your achievements to potential customers (and you need to get your entries in soon), I see June 26 as a way to get our customers’ customers to sit up and take notice. It’s got to be more important than World Canoe Day on the same day.
What should you actually do to mark the first Day is up to you – it could be something as simple as sharing a cold drink or two in the office, branch or place of work.
To start the ball rolling, we have printed some posters for you with your magazine, in the belief that at least by putting them up around the place we can make people ask the question: What’s this World Refrigeration Day all about?
And there will be some ideas for sharing on social media too shortly, if that is your thing