Study Finds LED Lighting Increases Supermarket Merchandise Appeal
A recent study from Rensselaer’s Lighting Research Center
(LRC) found that shoppers overwhelmingly prefer light-emitting
diode (LED) to fluorescent light inside supermarket freezer
cases. LED lighting – known for its bright, even quality —
increased frozen merchandise appeal for consumers when placed
in grocer’s freezers, according to the researchers.
Following a study in 2002, LRC researchers concluded that
white LEDs would make ideal light sources for freezer and
refrigerator displays. To further validate their findings, the
scientists conducted a two-year field study — sponsored by the
New York State Energy Research and Development Authority
(NYSERDA) — to evaluate a prototype freezer case outfitted with
one-watt, high-power white LEDs installed at a local
Over the course of the study, the LRC investigated shoppers’
preferences for an LED-lighted freezer case compared to a
matching freezer lit with conventional fluorescent lighting.
Approximately 300 shoppers were asked their opinions about the
lighting of the two test freezers, and more than 86 percent of
consumers selected the LED-lit freezer as the one they liked
the most, saying that the products were more appealing, and the
lighting was more even and comfortable to look at.
“Even though the average illuminance level of the
fluorescent-lighted freezer was slightly higher, the uneven
light distribution led to areas at the center of each glass
door that had roughly half of the average LED light level,”
said Nadarajah Narendran, director of research at the LRC.
“This likely led to the perception that the LED case was
LEDs can not only save energy, but they also last much
longer than fluorescent lamps in freezer environments,
providing a much lower lifecycle cost for owners, according to
Several manufacturers now offer commercial LED systems for
lighting freezers and refrigerated display cases.