PURCHASE, N.Y., March 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) announced today global goals to provide access to safe water to three million people in developing countries by 2015 and to continuously strive for positive water balance in company operations in water-distressed areas.
This new set of commitments builds on progress made by PepsiCo to promote greater water-use efficiency across its operations and to source water in ways that respect communities and ecosystems. In 2007, PepsiCo set a global goal to reduce water consumption by 20 percent per unit of production by 2015. To date, the company has achieved a more than 15 percent improvement in water use efficiency as compared to the company's 2006 baseline.
"We work hard to improve our water-use efficiency, preserve water resources and provide public access to clean water through alliances with nonprofit groups such as the Earth Institute and Water.org," said Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo's chairman and chief executive officer. "We are committed to minimizing the impact our business has on the environment, and we will continue to collaborate with our industry peers, governments, NGOs and communities to ensure we are doing more, collectively."
In addition, the PepsiCo Foundation continues to invest in sustainable water resource management methods, which positively impact both quantity and quality of water supplies, particularly in developing countries. Since 2005, The Foundation and PepsiCo have committed more than $15 million to organizations working to bring safe water to developing countries, including India, China and Africa. Together, PepsiCo and the PepsiCo Foundation are working to provide access to safe water to one million people from the world's most drought stricken regions by year's end. This program has already impacted more than 400,000 people since its launch in 2008.
"Through our WaterCredit and microloan programs supported by PepsiCo we have directly impacted more than 90,000 lives and made nearly 7,000 WaterCredit loans. We have installed water and sanitation systems in more than 20,000 households," said Gary White, executive director and co-founder of Water.org, a nonprofit organization that has transformed hundreds of communities in Africa, South Asia and Central America by providing access to safe water and sanitation. "We are honored to have the opportunity to work with such a dedicated company. It is with support from companies like PepsiCo that we can truly make a difference in the global water crisis."
After more than a decade of actively promoting sustainable water resource management, PepsiCo continues to drive responsible water solutions that are socially responsible, scientifically based and economically sound. Some of PepsiCo's water initiatives and milestones include:
- In 2009, PepsiCo saved more than 11 billion liters of water through efficiency improvements.
- In the U.S., the company began cleaning new Gatorade bottles with purified air instead of rinsing with water. The method works so well it is being adopted, along with other conservation techniques, by bottling facilities around the world, saving billions of liters of water from going down the drain.
- In the UK, PepsiCo Walkers' business has already reduced water usage at its largest potato chip facility by 42 percent between 2001 and 2007. Potatoes naturally contain a lot of water, and Walkers is working to capture that moisture and use it to make the UK facilities essentially self-sufficient in water, unplugged from the water mains.
- Agriculture uses 70 percent of the world's water. That's why in China, PepsiCo is sharing conservation techniques with its local farmers. These efforts have cut the water usage required to grow potatoes for Lay's potato chips in China by more than half.
- In India, PepsiCo beverage operations reduced water use in manufacturing by more than 45 percent and conserved more than 3 billion liters of water since 2007, achieving positive water balance – giving back more water than the company consumed.
- One of PepsiCo India's most successful initiatives has been its work with farmers to reduce the amount of water used in rice cultivation. The company introduced a technology called "direct seeding." Rather than growing seedlings in a nursery, planting them, then flooding the fields, direct seeding allows seeds to be planted directly into the ground, bypassing the nursery. This also removes the need for flood irrigation, and saves as much 30 percent of water needed. In 2009, direct seeding was extended to more than 6,500 acres of land resulting in savings of 5.5 billion liters of water.
- In Australia, PepsiCo's Smith's snacks manufacturing facility commissioned the first wastewater reuse system, which will dramatically reduce stress on local water resources at a time when the country is facing one of the worst droughts in history.
- In China, PepsiCo is teaching farmers to grow potatoes and other cash crops in desert conditions. The farmers are replacing traditional flood irrigation with pivot and drip irrigation. In drip irrigation, small holes in pipes literally 'drip' water on the field, reducing water usage by up to 50 percent.
- In Arizona, PepsiCo equipped the Frito-Lay facility in Casa Grande with a state-of-the-art water filtration and purification system to recycle and reuse approximately 80 percent of the process water used in production. For 10 consecutive years, PepsiCo has significantly reduced the amount of water used to make our Frito-Lay products in North America.
- In Mexico, the Gatorade plant installed a rain water harvest system, which collected 640 cubic meters of water in 2009. This has helped recharge the underground aquifer affected by Mexico City's population growth and has contributed to the business's overall water usage reduction of 10.5 percent vs. 2008.
- Since 2005, the PepsiCo Foundation has committed more than $15 million to initiatives that provide access to safe water and sanitation to communities in developing countries.
- In 2011, The PepsiCo Foundation will reach its goal of providing access to safe water and sanitation to 1 million people. This will be achieved through support of such partners as Water.org, Safe Water Network, The Energy Resources Institute, China Women's Development Foundation and the Earth Institute at Columbia University. These projects are helping to install village water and irrigation systems, establishing water health centers, constructing nearly 750 rainwater harvesting cisterns, improve sanitation programs and recharge aquifers in developing communities, particularly in Ghana, Kenya, Brazil, China and India.
Today's announcement is an example of PepsiCo's commitment to sustainable growth called "Performance with Purpose," which involves generating healthy financial returns while giving back to communities the company serves.
More information about PepsiCo's commitment to protecting the Earth's natural resources and PepsiCo's efforts to increase the efficient use of water can be found at www.Pepsico.com/water.
PepsiCo offers the world's largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 19 different product lines that each generates more than $1 billion in annual retail sales. Our main businesses - Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana and Gatorade - also make hundreds of other nourishing, tasty foods and drinks that bring joy to our consumers in more than 200 countries. With annualized revenues of nearly $60 billion, PepsiCo now employs approximately 275,000 people who are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth, called Performance with Purpose. By dedicating ourselves to offering a broad array of choices for healthy, convenient and fun nourishment, reducing our environmental impact, and fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace culture, PepsiCo balances strong financial returns with giving back to our communities worldwide. In recognition of its continued sustainability efforts, PepsiCo was named for the third time to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World) and for the fourth time to the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index (DJSI North America) in 2009. For more information, please visit www.pepsico.com.