PepsiCo installing biodigester at snack facility

PepsiCo has started a new project which will oversee turning waste into renewable energy at its snack facility in Portugal, having invested a total of US$8.15 million in a new biological tank – a biodigester – which will convert organic waste into biogas, reducing its overall carbon emissions.

From this April, a biodigester will take in sludge produced at the facility’s treatment plant, potato peelings, and other food waste that would ordinarily be discarded and is not fit for consumption.

“The new biodigester will have the capacity to convert 21,900 tonnes of organic waste per year into 4,818,000 Nm3 of biomethane per year, which equals a 30% reduction in carbon emissions during the production process,” said Nelson Sousa, Plant Manager for PepsiCo in Portugal.

Since 2012, the Carregado plant has been relying on a biogas production system which has allowed it to reduce its electricity consumption by 50%. It has also implemented a project to reuse the heat in the ovens to make the Doritos, making it possible to recover energy that is normally wasted by the chimneys and turn it into steam.

“We are proud to start the year with the announcement of this pioneering project in Southern Europe, which is a key step in the transformation process towards a positive value chain,” added Fernando Moraga, Director of PepsiCo in Portugal.

In addition to implementing the biodigester, PepsiCo has also involved six startups to support it in advancing its ambitious sustainability goals: this includes Ozo Innovations, who have been chosen to trial eloclear, its combined cleaner and disinfectant, at the plant in Portugal.

The eloclear will be generated on site using an elocube and will demonstrate how deploying eloclear can significantly reduce water, energy and chemical consumption in their food cleaning and hygiene process.

According to the company, Ozo’s technology has the potential to help businesses such as PepsiCo in reducing their carbon footprint and revolutionising industrial scale cleaning and hygiene processes. Produced from cold water and food grade salt using in-situ electrochemical generators, eloclear can simplify the food hygiene process in reducing water consumption.

“There is an urgent need to respond to the climate change challenge that the world faces and the team at Ozo are passionate about delivering safe, effective, and innovative hygiene solutions that support the carbon net zero agenda without compromising food safety,” explained Mark Poole, CEO of Ozo Innovations. “We are proud to be partnering with PepsiCo and are excited to be working with the team in Portugal to pilot the sustainability benefits that deploying eloclear can successfully deliver.”

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Media contact

Caitlin Gittins
Editor, International Bakery
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 920

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