Pepsi introduces all-plant plastic bottle, no hemp in it yet

Pepsi vegetable plastic, not hemp plastic yetAs with all new technologies, it takes a few opinion-leaders embracing the new idea to pull the rest of us on-board.  And few companies have the huge consumer “gravitational pull” of Coke and Pepsi in their ongoing fight for carbonated sugar-water supremacy. So it was with great surprise this week to hear that Pepsi is introducing an all-vegetable matter container for their product.

The bottle is made from switch grass, pine bark, corn husks and other materials. Ultimately, Pepsi plans to also use orange peels, oat hulls, potato scraps and other leftovers from its food business.

Obviously they have heard their customers grumbling about plastic bottles filling landfills and floating in the oceans, this move is to step out in front of that problem.  Which is fantastic.  I’d happily pay an extra quarter to know that my plastic bottle is going to decompse in my lifetime.

The article goes on to say that Pepsi has “cracked the code” to make a stable vegetable-matter plastic that won’t decay when it comes in contact with carbonic acid or on consumers’ shelves.  It is kind of amazing when you think about it.  Plastic is in everything you touch all day long every day, to have an organic plastic start replacing some of that is a huge leap forward on the sustainability front.

It’s no hemp-plastic (yet), but it is a huge step in the right direction. Remember to vote with your dollars and reward manufacturers for experimenting with products like this one.

Pepsi’s announcement comes on the heels of  Coke’s introduction of a 30% organic bottle. Hopefully this is a race to out-green each other!  We’ll let you know when Coke announces they are going 100% organic with their bottles.

Way to go Pepsi. applauds your innovation, so we will reward you with some free press about your other sustainable packaging intitiatives taken directly from your press release:

Specific examples of PepsiCo’s recent environmental innovations and progress include:

  • SunChips developing the world’s first fully compostable bag and using solar power at the Modesto manufacturing facility to take some of the plant off the electrical grid;
  • light-weighting Aquafina’s bottles with the introduction of the Eco-Fina bottle in 2009, the lightest bottle of its size among U.S. bottled water brands;
  • Naked Juice transitioning to a 100 percent post-consumer recycled plastic bottle with the introduction of itsreNEWabottle™ – the first beverage, distributed nationally in the U.S., to do so;
  • achieving “positive water balance” in India in 2009 – through direct seeding initiatives, the company replenished nearly six billion liters of water across India, exceeding the total intake of approximately five billion liters of water by its manufacturing facilities;
  • introducing the Dream Machine recycling initiative, to provide greater access to on-the-go recycling receptacles and help increase the U.S. beverage container recycling rate from 34 percent to 50 percent, by 2018;
  • launching a groundbreaking pilot program, using low-carbon fertilizers that drastically reduce Tropicana’s lifecycle carbon footprint

Read the full story here:

Pepsi bottles: no more plastic –

And the Press Release HERE.

(That said, on an unrelated note, this is all I can see whenever I look at the Pepsi logo.)

Pepsi vegetable plastic, no, not hemp plastic

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2 thoughts on “Pepsi introduces all-plant plastic bottle, no hemp in it yet”

  1. I work for a company that makes industrial use fabrics out of petroleum based plastics. I hope they can figure out how to produce their PET cost competitive with petroleum. To the people with the money in my industry material costs matter more than just about any other consideration. Anyway, this story brings a lot of hope to me about our next 10 years!

    From their press release;

    “Combining biological and chemical processes, PepsiCo has identified methods to create a molecular structure that is identical to petroleum-based PET (polyethylene terephthalate), which results in a bottle that looks, feels and protects its product identically to existing PET beverage containers.”

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