The center supports PepsiCo Mexico and PepsiCo’s strategy to drive growth through R&D across the company’s portfolio.
Research and development are growth drivers for PepsiCo, and this week the company officially inaugurated its Apodaca, Nuevo Leon, Mexico Baking Category Innovation Center, which will play a key role developing new product innovations across the company’s brand portfolio.
The center was celebrated this week in Mexico City at a public event hosted by Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto, with PepsiCo’s Chairman and CEO Indra K. Nooyi and PepsiCo Mexico’s President Pedro Padierna.
The new baking facility is equipped with an advanced culinary center and development laboratories focused on creating and tailoring new baked products for distinct consumer benefits and taste preferences in Mexico and in PepsiCo markets around the world, and developing new capabilities that drive sustained growth in the baking goods category.
In addition, the facility will house a pilot manufacturing plant that will allow product developers and engineers to quickly test new ideas and significantly accelerate the pace of new product innovation.
“The new facility is a state-of-the-art research and development center where Mexican and multi-national food experts create new baked options and healthier choices to delight our consumers around the world.” -- Carmela Rivero, vice president, Research and Development, PepsiCo Mexico Foods.
The baking center will employ more than 100 people from diverse backgrounds, including chefs, nutritionists, food scientists and baking technology experts.
The center’s mission, according to its director, Alejandra Kamel, is to be a center of excellence for PepsiCo baked products. “Mexico is PepsiCo’s third largest market, and we are sharing the expertise that we have in baking with other PepsiCo markets,” she said.
The center is already partnering on projects with PepsiCo businesses in the United States, Canada, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Poland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Malaysia and Thailand. Many of these projects are focused on the development good-for-you products, said Kamel. One example is the Quaker Oat & Yogurt Sandwich Biscuit that was developed for the North American market.
Innovations for markets outside of Mexico include the development of regional flavors, the use of local ingredients and unique product shapes that help differentiate PepsiCo products, said Kamel.
“The investments we’ve made to strengthen our global research and development capabilities are driving successful new innovation across PepsiCo’s global food and beverage portfolio,” Nooyi said.
DID YOU KNOW? PepsiCo Mexico is one of the largest consumer product companies in the country, with net revenues in Mexico of $4.3 billion (U.S.) in 2013.
“Mexico is an attractive food and beverage market with great potential for future growth,” she said. “Mexico is a cradle of innovation for PepsiCo globally and this new center will fuel a wide range of exciting new PepsiCo products.”
The baking innovation center is part of PepsiCo’s long-term strategy to invest in Mexico. Earlier this year, the company announced a multiyear investment plan that’s expected to generate 4,000 new jobs. The company’s investments are focused on four priority areas: innovation and brand building; infrastructure; agriculture and community.
Additionally, the center was built in line with the criteria established by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), the world's leading green building standard. It uses advanced technologies and processes to conserve natural resources and reduce operating costs.
DID YOU KNOW? PepsiCo Mexico employs more than 40,000 people throughout the country, and PepsiCo products have been sold in Mexico since 1907.
“We are proud of the actions we have taken in Mexico and around the world to position PepsiCo for sustainable long-term growth by conserving our planet's resources, expanding our product portfolio, building a diverse and inclusive workplace, and acting as a responsible citizen in our communities,” said Nooyi.
“We believe our commitment to delivering Performance with Purpose will drive sustained value for PepsiCo and positively contribute to Mexico’s development well into the future," she said.
The facility is one of several “centers of excellence” within PepsiCo’s global research-and-development organization. Other facilities include a beverage innovation center in New York, a snacks innovation center in Texas, an oats innovation center in Illinois, a fruit and vegetable innovation center in Germany, and an Asian food and beverage innovation center in China.
Learn more about how research and development are helping drive growth at PepsiCo hereand here.