Nottingham architects Cox Freeman are highlighting how food and drink firms can save money and reduce their environmental impact through the latest building designs while the company exhibits at Food & Drink Expo 2010 this week.

At the trade show, Cox Freeman are turning the spotlight on ways that firms in the sector can incorporate energy-saving devices and designs into new and existing buildings, which will ultimately make them more energy efficient and create significant savings in fuel bills.

All non-domestic buildings will need a net zero CO₂ rating by 2019 – and now is the time to plan ahead, says Cox Freeman director Alan McCall.

“High levels of energy consumption in the food industry means that significant savings in annual fuel bills can be realised by using renewable and low carbon energy initiatives in conjunction with intelligent building design,” said Alan.

“High initial capital costs and long payback periods have previously discouraged their inclusion within building budgets but increasing levels of uptake mean that costs are continuing to fall, and this is the message that we aim to get across during Food & Drink Expo 2010.”

Cox Freeman is one of more than 600 firms exhibiting at Food & Drink Expo 2010, which takes place at the NEC, Birmingham, from March 21st to 24th. It is the largest UK food and drink trade exhibition – bringing together all sectors of the food and drink market, including retail, foodservice, wholesale and manufacturing, as well as associated industries.

Cox Freeman, based in Stoney Street, Nottingham, is an architectural practice specialising in the design of food production facilities and has worked for leading names in the industry, including Heinz, Dairy Crest, Sun Valley Foods and Melton Foods. The firm designed the units at Southglade Food Park, Nottingham, which opened in 2005 and was the UK’s first food business park with a dedicated on-site business centre.

“Food & Drink Expo 2010 is the perfect opportunity for Cox Freeman to explain to food processors and producers looking to invest in new buildings how the inclusion of energy-saving solutions and the careful consideration of building orientation and site layout are important when planning new facilities,” said Alan.

“Cox Freeman are committed to the incorporation of renewable and low carbon energy solutions into all of their buildings in the food sector, and to finding effective architectural solutions to complement and enhance energy initiatives.

“Whether the most appropriate energy solution involves the inclusion of waste to energy plant, energy reclamation from fridge plant, ground source heat pumps for simultaneous heating and cooling, combined heat and power plant, photovoltaics, wind turbines or biofuels, the design of a building can enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the system.”

Cox Freeman is at stand N168 at Food & Drink Expo 2010.