PepsiCo announced a new goal to use 25 percent recycled content in its plastic packaging by the year 2025. The initiative is part of the beverage giant’s ongoing Performance with Purpose 2025 plan, by which time Pepsi hopes to make all its packaging recyclable, compostable or biodegradable.
As one of the world’s largest sources of plastic packaging, PepsiCo has taken responsibility for its environmental impact. The Fortune 500 company is making a bold statement about single-use plastic that in addition to making itself look good to consumers, may inspire other brands to adopt similar tactics, if they haven’t already.
PepsiCo is taking particular attention to polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and specifically, PET manufactured by Loop Industries. Loop’s PET is 100 percent recycled material made by continuously recycling low-value plastics into virgin quality. PepsiCo hopes to achieve 33 percent recycled PET content by 2025.
According to the brand’s vice chairman and chief scientific officer Dr. Mehmood Khan, PepsiCo is already one of the world’s largest users of food-grade recycled PET. Khan called attention to global waste collection and recycling rates, saying that investment in these areas is “vital.”
Other goals include 100 percent sustainable sourcing of palm oil and cane sugar by 2020 and zero landfill waste across direct operations by 2025. By the year 2030, PepsiCo aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20 percent.
Luckily for the planet, PepsiCo is far from alone in its pursuit of reducing waste. Coca-Cola launched a similar sustainability campaign by releasing specially microchipped reusable bottles for its Freestyle dispensers. Meanwhile, its World Without Waste initiative aims to collect or recycle one bottle or can for each one sold by 2030. McDonald’s is also partnered with Starbucks in July to find alternatives to disposable plastic cups.
Single-use straws are also under the crosshairs of environmentally conscious brands, with Corona, Bacardi, Starbucks and others vowing to eliminate them all together.
According to Pew Research, 75 percent of American adults are “particularly concerned” about helping the environment, but only one in five say they make an effort to live in ways that protect it all the time. Despite widespread concern, a majority of Americans turn to the government for action, with 55 percent listing the environment as a top policy issue that the President and Congress should tackle in 2018.