PepsiCo to chop use of virgin plastic as a part of broad sustainability objective

Dive Temporary:

  • PepsiCo mentioned it should cut back using virgin plastic per serving by 50% throughout its international meals and beverage portfolio by 2030, and incorporate half recycled content material in its plastic packaging as a part of a brand new initiative known as Pep+.
  • The beverage and snack large additionally mentioned it could give attention to scaling new enterprise fashions that require little or no single-use packaging, noting efforts to develop its SodaStream sparkling-water enterprise.
  • PepsiCo’s normal of measurement would be the quantity of plastic used to serve 12 ounces of drinks and 1 ounce of meals, Reuters reported, permitting the corporate to extra simply measure its use of the packaging materials.

Dive Perception:

As extra corporations have pledged to curtail their waste, few supplies have been focused as fiercely as plastic. PepsiCo and archrival Coca-Cola have been hit particularly exhausting by critics who’ve mentioned the makers of sodas, bottled waters, teas and sports activities drinks are usually not doing sufficient to scale back their packaging impression.

Coca-Cola estimates it produces 120 billion bottles of single-use plastic annually, whereas a report from the Ellen MacArthur Basis mentioned PepsiCo consumes 2.3 million metric tons of plastic yearly.

Earlier this 12 months, Coca-Cola launched new bottles created from 100% recycled plastic materials. In 2018, the maker of Food regimen Coke and Sprite pledged to gather and recycle the equal of a bottle or can for each one it sells by 2030, make 100% of its packaging recyclable by 2025 and use 50% recycled materials in its bottles and cans by 2030.

Much like different CPG corporations, PepsiCo is not any stranger to creating guarantees to scale back its environmental footprint, however its latest announcement seems to embrace a extra bold agenda. Simply two years in the past, PepsiCo vowed to scale back 35% of its virgin plastic content material throughout its beverage portfolio by 2025. Now it is focusing on a 50% minimize in beverage and meals by 2030.

“Pep+ is the way forward for our firm,” Ramon Laguarta, PepsiCo’s Chairman and CEO, mentioned in a press release. “It displays a brand new enterprise actuality, the place customers have gotten extra thinking about the way forward for the planet and society.”  

Through the pandemic, sustainable packaging has emerged as a prime precedence as customers present extra curiosity of their environmental footprint and that of the general meals system. This has doubtless intensified strain on CPGs to transcend their earlier commitments.

Practically two-thirds of customers take into account it essential that the merchandise they purchase are in recyclable packaging, based on Trivium Packaging’s 2021 International Shopping for Inexperienced Report. The report additionally discovered greater than half (54%) take sustainable packaging into consideration when deciding on a product.

Along with its dedication to scale back its use of virgin plastic, PepsiCo is tapping into the sustainability halo provided by its SodaStream platform.

The glowing water maker, bought by PepsiCo for $3.2 billion in 2018, permits customers to make use of a machine to make a beverage they’ll load into their very own containers, curbing the necessity for brand new plastic bottles. If PepsiCo can develop the system into new markets and entice customers with extra flavors, it might keep away from the necessity for greater than 200 billion plastic bottles by 2030, the corporate mentioned.

The New York beverage and snack firm additionally famous it has been investing in meals packaging know-how and is now introducing a completely compostable bag made with plant-based supplies, beginning with its Off The Eaten Path model. PepsiCo mentioned it’s prepared to work with different corporations to license the identical know-how for gratis to construct momentum for a round meals packaging system.

Greenpeace, which has been important of CPGs’ efforts to deal with sustainability, had combined opinions about PepsiCo’s sustainability push. John Hocevar, oceans marketing campaign director at Greenpeace USA, mentioned the sector produces trillions of things annually which are packaged in throwaway plastic, one thing that may’t be overcome by recycling.

“Growing recycling charges and recycled content material brings some incremental positive factors, however so long as that continues to be the main focus of the sector’s consideration the issue will proceed to worsen,” Hocevar mentioned. “It’s encouraging to listen to about Pepsi’s plans to develop the SodaStream a part of their enterprise, however the firm must set bold reuse/refill targets for all merchandise and types.”

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