The Sierra Healthy Refrigeration Program: Application period now open

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Katey Ford

Sierra Healthy Refrigeration Program & Climate Planning

Sierra Business Council (SBC) and the High Sierra Energy Foundation (HSEF) are working together on the Sierra Healthy Refrigeration Program (SHRP), which will provide technical assistance for refrigeration rebate applications and access to free refrigeration units to bring healthy food options to low-access areas. SBC and the HSEF have been allies for nearly a decade on the Rural and Hard-to-Reach working group, sharing best practices and promoting the needs of rural ratepayers to the California Public Utilities Commission.

SBC and the HSEF are coordinating efforts to implement this program in 16 counties: Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Inyo, Lassen, Mariposa, Mono, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sierra, Sutter, Tuolumne, and Yuba. 

This grant program is funded by the California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Farm-to-Fork (CDFA-F2F) and will award free energy-efficient refrigeration units to corner stores, food donation programs, and other small businesses in low-income or low-access areas throughout the state. These new refrigeration units are to be stocked with California-grown fresh produce, nuts, dairy, meat, eggs, and minimally processed and culturally appropriate foods.

Organic cherry tomatoes for sale at a market

Benefits of the SHRP include: 

  • Increasing access to healthy, fresh foods in low-income or low-access areas.
  • Accelerating adoption of energy-efficient refrigeration units by small businesses.
  • Supporting California’s climate initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions generated by older, less efficient refrigeration units.


The CDFA will open the refrigeration grant program for application submission in one phase. The timeline of refrigeration grant applications is as follows:

  • Grant application opens: March 21, 2023
  • Grant application closes: June 6, 2023
  • Anticipated awards announcement: July 2023
  • Tentative start date for grant terms: Fall 2023 


SBC and the HSEF will assist interested applicants with the application process, as well as support the selection, procurement, and installation of refrigeration units.

If you, or anyone in your network, is interested in the Sierra Healthy Refrigeration Program, please reach out to us at! For eligibility requirements and program information, please visit our website.

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