Federal Energy Management Program
FEMP Designated Product:
Hot Food Holding Cabinets
Leading by example, Legal Authorities
saving energy and Federal agencies are required by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (P.L. 109-58) and Federal Acquisition
taxpayer dollars in Regulations (FAR) Subpart 23.2 to specify and buy ENERGY STAR®-qualified products or, in categories with
no ENERGY STAR label, FEMP-designated products which are among the highest 25 percent of equivalent
products for energy efficiency.
Performance Requirement for Federal Purchases
for Energy-Efficient Products
Internal Volume Energy Usagea
Full Size (> 16 cu. ft.) 720 watts or less
Three-Quarter Size (10 to 16 cu. ft. ) 400 watts or less
Half Size (< 10 cu. ft.) 300 watts or less
a) Based on an idle energy rate of 40 watts/cubic foot. To determine the Energy Usage for sizes not shown, multiply
the cabinet’s internal volume (in cu. ft.) by 40.
Buying Energy-Efficient Hot Food Holding Cabinets
When buying hot food holding cabinets through commercial sources, select prod-
ucts that are ENERGY STAR®-qualified (see For More Information), all of which meet
the Performance Requirements shown above. Most manufacturers and retailers display
the ENERGY STAR logo on complying models. For models not displaying this logo,
check the manufacturer’s literature (Web site, operating manual, product specifica-
tions) to determine if the power level or idle energy rate meets this Specification.
The federal supply source for hot food holding cabinets is the General Services Administration (GSA),
which offers them through Schedule 539. Note that not all hot food holding cabinets sold by GSA are
ENERGY STAR-qualified and some products that do qualify may not be indicated as such. When buying
from this source, request GSA vendor lists for models that meet this Specification.
Performance requirements apply to all forms of procurements, including: guide and project specifications;
construction, renovation, repair, maintenance and energy service contracts, lease agreements and solicita-
tions for offers. Energy performance requirements should be included in all evaluations of solicitation
responses. Model language to assist agencies with incorporating these performance requirements into pro-
curement documents is available at http://www.eere.energy.gov/femp/procurement/eep_modellang.html.
Agencies can claim an exception to these requirements through a written finding that no ENERGY STAR-
qualified or FEMP-designated product is available to meet the functional requirements, or that no such
product is life-cycle cost-effective for the specific application.
An insulated cabinet is the most important feature to look for when buying an energy-efficient hot food
holding cabinet. In addition to saving energy, insulated cabinets radiate less heat into the kitchen which
helps to keep the work environment more comfortable. The insulation will also make the interior temper-
ature more uniform from top to bottom. Select a cabinet size that is appropriate for the amount of food
typically served. Choosing an oversized product will increase purchase cost and also waste energy. Hot
food holding cabinets are available with other energy saving features such as magnetic gaskets, self-closing
doors, temperature and humidity controls, and Dutch doors (for access to part of the cabinet without los-
ing heat from the entire cabinet).
FEMP Designated Product:
Hot Food Holding Cabinets
User Tips For More Information:
EERE Information Center
Hot food holding cabinets are often left on overnight. Since most products require only fifteen (15) minutes 1-877-EERE-INF or 1-877-337-3463
to warm up, turning hot food holding cabinets off when they are empty could save substantially on annual www.eere.energy.gov/femp/procurement/
energy costs. Make sure that door gaskets and auto door closers are maintained in good operating condition. Cyrus Nasseri, Project Manager
Worn door gaskets and faulty auto door closers allow hot air to escape from the cabinet and increase energy (202) 586-9138
General Services Administration
Cost-Effectiveness Example General Products Center, Fort Worth TX
Performance Base Model Required Best Availablea www.fss.gsa.gov/
Idle Energy Rate (watts/cubic foot) 60.4 40.0 6.65 Defense Logistics Agency
Energy Usage (max.) 1,500 watts 992 watts 165 watts www.emall.dla.mil/
Annual Energy Use 8,210 kWh 5,430 kWh 903 kWh Defense Supply Center Philadelphia
Annual Energy Cost $490 $325 $55 (800) DLA-BULB or (215) 737-7950
Lifetime Energy Costb $5,350 $3,540 $590
The Food Service Technology Center
Lifetime Energy Cost Savings - $1,810 $4,760 publishes fact sheets and test reports on
a) More efficient products may have been introduced to the market since this specification was published. Information commercial kitchen equipment.
on the best available model was obtained from the February 2006 ENERGY STAR hot food holding cabinet products (925) 866-2844
list (see For More Information). www.fishnick.com/
b) Lifetime energy cost is the sum of the discounted value of the annual energy costs based on average usage and an
The North American Association of
assumed hot food holding cabinet life of life of 15 years. Future energy price trends and a discount rate of 3.0% are
Food Equipment Manufacturers has
based on federal guidelines (effective from April, 2006 to March, 2007).
information on standards, guidelines,
and other publications on commercial
Cost-Effectiveness Assumptions kitchen equipment.
Annual energy use in this example is based on a 24.8 cubic foot hot food holding cabinet operating for 15
hours per day, 365 days per year at a typical temperature setting of 150° F. The assumed electric price is 6.0¢/ American Society for Testing and
kWh, the federal average electricity price in the US. Materials (ASTM) has test standards for
food service equipment.
Using the Cost-Effectiveness Table www.astm.org/
In the example above, the Required hot food holding cabinet, with an idle rate of 40.0 watts per cubic foot (w/
The Lawrence Berkeley National
cu. ft.) and energy usage of 992 watts, is cost-effective if its purchase price is no more than $1,810 above the Laboratory and Food Services
price of the base model. The Best Available model, with an idle rate of 6.65 w/cu. ft. and energy usage of 165 Technology Center provided supporting
analysis for this recommendation.
watts, is cost-effective if its price is no more than $4,760 above the price of the Base Model. (202) 646-7950
What if my Electricity Price is Different?
ENERGY STAR has an Excel-based cost calculator for hot food holding cabinets on its Web site. Go to
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=hfhc.pr_hfhc, and click on Savings Product Calculator in the right A Strong Energy Portfolio for a
hand column. Input the product information and rate for electricity at your facility. The output section will
Energy efficiency and clean, renewable
automatically display results that more accurately reflect your situation. energy will mean a stronger economy,
cleaner environment, and greater energy
independence for America. Working
with a wide array of state, community,
industry, and university partners, the U.S.
Department of Energy’s Office of Energy
Efficiency and Renewable Energy invests in
a diverse portfolio of energy technologies.