New conversion shop keeps food transport safe

A local manufacturer of refrigeration units for vans that transport food is brining jobs to Hunts Point as well as safer and healthier food.

Michael Leibmann, the owner of ReeferTek along with partner Barry Milea, said the company has created new jobs with the opening of the custom conversion shop that installs refrigeration units on vans and trucks that transfer food from commercial food markets to retail locations.

“Any food business must have refrigerated transport trucks according to the law,” Leibmann said. “Yet many people will just buy a vehicle, go to a market, like the Hunts Point markets, and load meat, fish, and vegetables into the back of a van without any insulation or cooling, except maybe some ice.”

He said he has also witnessesed food retailers who deliver food to their stores in the back of their own personal vehicles, which not only violates the law, but also potentially contributes to hazardous health issues.

On the other hand, ReeferTek builds custom refrigerated insulation of commercial trucks and vans of all sizes through what will soon be a patented process.

“We service the food industry and our quality and state-of-the-art products, which provide the right kinds of temperatures for food delivery companies,” Leibmann said. “The cost is 15 percent to 20 percent of the total cost of the vehicle, but since the vehicles then meet all FDA requirements, it increases its resale value and holds value.”

ReeferTek, which installs its refrigeration units on the tops of vans and trucks and uses Thermo King refrigeration products, is creating much needed manufacturing jobs for the borough, Leibmann said.

“The whole country is crying out that there is no manufacturing going on in America these days, and that is what we are doing here,” Leibmann said. “Small entrepreneurs are starting businesses and are hiring people right under our noses.”

The businesses owners who take the time and absorb the cost to have the proper refrigeration units installed on their vehicles, like customer Pasta Resources of New York, N.Y. and many others, are doing the right thing by their customers even though competitors may not be following FDA regulations to the letter of the law, Leibmann said.

“The people who come to me are people in the food business who want to do the right thing,” Leibmann said. “By law, trucks that transport food must have refrigerated units.”

For more information on ReeferTek, visit their website at or call the sales department at (855) 534-2626.

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