ALEXANDRIA, Va.—PepsiCo is investing $15 million in Closed Loop Partners' Leadership Fund, according to a news release. The private equity fund acquires and grows companies, including in the packaging value chain, to strengthen recycling infrastructure and build circular supply chains that keep materials out of landfills.
According to PepsiCo, the investment reinforces its desire to create a world where packaging never becomes waste, and the company's plans to increase recycling rates in the United States, while also providing consumers better access to incremental recycled plastic supply.
PepsiCo has a goal to cut in half its virgin plastic from nonrenewable sources across its food and beverage portfolios by 2030. In the U.S., all Pepsi-branded products are expected to be converted to 100% rPET bottles by 2030, with Pepsi Zero Sugar beginning to be sold in 100% rPET bottles by 2022.
Currently, 87% of PepsiCo’s packaging is recyclable, compostable or biodegradable, according to its 2020 Sustainability Report.
"The recycling landscape in America continues to be challenging, and as companies—including PepsiCo—set ambitious goals to use more recycled content in their packaging, there is more need than ever for partnerships and action to increase access to recycled material," said Jason Blake, chief sustainability officer and senior vice president at PepsiCo. "Through PepsiCo Positive, our end-to-end strategic transformation agenda, sustainability is at the heart of everything we do. We are honored to expand our partnership with Closed Loop Partners through this investment to advocate for and advance the necessary work that is being done to transform the recycling system."
PepsiCo has a history of partnering with Closed Loop. PepsiCo is a founding member of the Closed Loop Fund, now known as the Closed Loop Infrastructure Fund. It also is an investor in the Closed Loop Partners' Beverage Fund, and PepsiCo is a founding partner of Closed Loop Partners' Composting Consortium.
Meanwhile, Mars Wrigley UK has removed the black polyethylene liners in its from Maltesers candy boxes, which will eliminate 82 tons of plastic each year, reports Confectionery Production. The brand’s classic box is now fully recyclable. Britons eat over 180 million Maltesers treats every year, according to the article.
“At Mars, we take our responsibility for sustainable packaging seriously, and today’s announcement that our iconic Maltesers box is now fully recyclable is another important step in our journey toward packaging that is 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable,” Adam Grant, general manager Mars Wrigley UK, told Confectionery Production.
Starting last April, Mars Wrigley UK reduced the sizes of some of the packaging of its brands, including M&M’s, Galaxy Counters, Galaxy Minstrels, Revels, Maltesers Buttons, Skittles and Starburst, which eliminated 51 tons or around 647,000 square meters of plastic each year.