March 22, 2022  

PepsiCo's innovative Net Water Positive projects

PepsiCo aims to set a new standard in water stewardship. This World Water Day, learn about some of the projects helping the company reach that goal.

Building new facilities to make safe water more accessible in Nigeria. Irrigating crops with the power of gravity. Restoring wetlands in the Colorado River Basin.

These are just a few of the more-than-dozen inventive projects and strategic partnerships PepsiCo has launched since August. They're part of the company’s ambition to become Net Water Positive by 2030 — that is, replenishing more water than it uses.

“We’re taking a look at our full value chain, from top to bottom, and asking, how can we leverage the innovation and creativity that exists within our company to ensure that the water resources PepsiCo uses are better off a decade from now than they are today?" says Jim Andrew, PepsiCo’s Chief Sustainability Officer.

Learn more about those projects and the progress they have helped PepsiCo make:

 

 


 

 
EXPANDING SAFE WATER ACCESS TO MILLIONS MORE AROUND THE WORLD

 

Children wash their hands at a hand pump installed in Uttar Pradesh, India.

 

The PepsiCo Foundation aims to provide 100 million people with access to safe, clean drinking water by 2030. It reached 8 million additional people in 2021, bringing its total to approximately 68 million since 2006.

The scope of PepsiCo’s impact is expected to grow even larger this year. In Nigeria, the Foundation is granting $1 million to WaterAid to support the construction of water supply and sanitation facilities and the development of programs that promote good hygiene practices. In Latin America, the Foundation is building on a longtime partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank’s AquaFund by granting $500,000 to improve access to hygiene in schools and sanitation in households.

 

 


 

 
CHANGING THE WAY FARMERS IRRIGATE THEIR CROPS  

 

The N-Drip irrigation system is powered only by gravity and can decrease water consumption by 50%.

 

PepsiCo announced a partnership with N-Drip in March to advance water-saving irrigation technology for farmers. The most common form of irrigation practiced around the world is to flood fields at regular intervals. That process is simple, but it wastes up to 70% of the water used and can lower crop yields. N-Drip offers a low-cost alternative powered only by gravity — a drip irrigation system that applies small amounts of water uniformly, eliminating water runoff and evaporation.

At farms in India, Vietnam and the U.S. where PepsiCo helped growers install the technology, crop yield improved and water consumption decreased by 50% compared to flood irrigation. Expanding use across 25,000 acres by 2025 will contribute to the pep+ (PepsiCo Positive) goals of improving agricultural water use efficiency and spreading regenerative farming practices across 7 million acres.

 

 


 

 
USING WATER FROM POTATO-CHIP COOKING IN NEW WAYS

 

 

PepsiCo's Global Research & Development team designed a method to recover more than 50% of the water used during the potato chip cooking process. Potatoes are 80% water, and frying them releases that water as steam. This new process captures that steam, condenses it and cleans it to safe drinking standards. That water can then be reused to wash new potatoes as they arrive from the farm and power other processes at the plant, such as air conditioning and refrigeration. 

The technology has been implemented in PepsiCo’s Kolkata, India, facility, and the company plans to adopt it in nearly 30 others in high-water-risk areas by 2030. Early results show the process can save approximately 60 million liters of water per year at each facility that adopts this method.

 


 

 
SUPPORTING WATER REPLENISHMENT PROJECTS IN THE COLORADO RIVER BASIN

 

PepsiCo is investing in a project that aims to replenish approximately 380 million gallons of water per year in the water-stressed Colorado River Basin.

 

\PepsiCo has invested nearly $2 million in two projects aimed at helping one of the world’s most water-stressed regions. One is a founding investment in the Colorado River Basin Fund, which is focused on developing technology solutions to address water scarcity in the area. The fund will aid startups working on projects such as water recycling, air moisture capture and leak detection in smart homes. 

The other investment is a partnership with nonprofit Trout Unlimited to build a mile-long channel to connect two segments of the Colorado River blocked by the Windy Gap Reservoir near Denver. The project will create 18 acres of new wetlands, restore 50 acres of riverside habitat and replenish approximately 380 million gallons of water per year.

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