PepsiCo steps up sustainability drive with trial of recycled packaging for Walkers crisps

UK – PepsiCo is set to trial new paper-based outer packaging across its Walkers Baked multipacks, in a first for savory snacks flexible packaging in the UK.

PepsiCo says the trial pack is widely recyclable and will replace plastic outer wrapping on more than 300,000 six-pack multipacks, across Sea Salt and Cheese and Onion flavors.

The packs launched across 800 Tesco stores on 1 March, with the food company asking shoppers for feedback on the new design and its functionality.

Walkers senior marketing manager, Rachael Smith said: “With this latest trial, people can buy a selection of Walkers Baked multipacks in a paper-based outer packaging that can be easily and widely recycled with regular recycling at home.

“Feedback is so important in helping us deliver the best possible experience for consumers, and we can’t wait to hear people’s thoughts when the packs land in stores.”

Gareth Callan, packaging sustainability lead of Pepsico UK & Ireland added: “We’re always exploring new packaging solutions that can help us reduce virgin fossil plastic use, in pursuit of our broader sustainable packaging goals.

“After more than two years in development, we’re looking forward to testing this paper-based outer material with our consumers to better assess the role it could play in our future packaging portfolio.”

PepsiCo said the new trial marks another step in its journey towards eliminating virgin fossil-based plastic from its crisp and snack bags across Europe by 2030. The company has initiated some projects to help achieve the goal.

Last month, PepsiCo’s unit in Portugal elevated its sustainability drive with an investment of €7.5 million (US$8m) in procuring a new biodigester that will transform organic waste into biogas, the company’s first in southern Europe.

The new digester will have the capacity to convert over 21,900 tons of organic waste per year into 4,818,000 Nm3 (normal cubic meters) of bio-methane per year, equivalent to a 30% reduction in carbon emissions during the production process.

The company also, back in October last year, announced plans to introduce bottles made from recycled plastic in several markets of Africa, the Middle East and South Asia (AMESA) across beverage brands like Aquafina and Pepsi.

PepsiCo aims to continue its progress towards expanding plastic collection programs to 14 AMESA markets by developing recycling infrastructure through advocacy and partnerships by 2023.

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