In our urbanized society, refrigeration as the means to slow down food spoilage has become indispensable. It also provides the means for people to earn their livelihood by exporting food to distant places — part of globalization. Refrigeration has become a large industry in itself, as well as supporting other industries, such as brewing. It is essential in life sciences research and for storing certain kinds of medicines. But have we become too dependent on refrigeration? Are there costs associated with it that are greater than commonly imagined? Iced drinks may not necessarily be healthy. It seems bizarre for countries to be exporting food while some of their citizens are close to starving. We have become used to having the same fresh fruits in all seasons, making the culinary experience boring.
This project takes a cold, hard look at refrigeration. It is suggested that every owner of a domestic refrigerator or freezer should donate £10. The initial funds used will be used to create a dedicated website and some materials for schools. The aim is to achieve sustainability by the close of the campaign. Responsible Refrigeration will continue developing schools materials (in English) and offer talks for children (in the UK). Pamphlets and books will be produced. We shall undertake research to define the value of refrigeration to individuals and society in terms of quality of life and quantifiable costs (the judgment-value approach). This research may include sponsoring students. All results will be published.