The pilot project launched by PepsiCo in February of this year, in which the food and beverage giant aimed to manufacture 830 ecological pallets for use in two of the company's logistics centres, has apparently been a major success. PepsiCo has now ordered an additional 30 thousand of these shipping pallets, which are made with UBQ, a waste-based thermoplastic produced by UBQ Materials in Israel, and other materials that include recycled PP resin and recycled BOPP. The latter is used by PepsiCo in its snack packaging.
Next to pallets, the company has also announced that it will be incorporating UBQ’s material in other applications as well.
The first of these will be the Lay’s Chips displays used across Europe. These will be made in part with UBQ, as a substitute for conventional oil-based plastics.
UBQ is a bio-based thermoplastic made from 100% unsorted household waste, including all organics. Use of UBQ diverts waste from landfills and incineration, preventing emissions from being released into the environment. According to UBQ Materials, for every ton of UBQ produced, up to 12 tons of CO₂eq are prevented from polluting the environment. The company is growing: following a round of investment led by TPG Climate Rise, UBQ Materials is expanding globally with a large-scale facility and lab in Bergen Op Zoom, Netherlands.
”Our goal is to transform our entire supply chain to tackle the sustainability challenges the world faces. UBQ Materials' waste-based thermoplastic reduces landfill waste, prevents emissions, and takes us towards circularity, which is why we are working towards scaling use of UBQ globally," said David Schwartz, VP, PepsiCo Labs.
PepsiCo has established a sustainable transformation agenda called PepsiCo Positive (pep+) in which the company has set various environmental goals including reducing GHG emissions by 40% in less than a decade and becoming Net-Zero by 2040. Its technology venture arm, Pepsi Labs has identified UBQ Materials as an anchor solution that will support the realisation of these goals.
"PepsiCo Labs plays a critical role in supporting Pep+ by prioritising innovations that minimise the company's environmental impact, noted Albert Douer, co-CEO and chairman of UBQ Materials. “This collaboration is one example of how corporations can make significant change through simple substitutions."
Along with five other solutions innovators, UBQ Materials was recently selected to advance PepsiCo's sustainability agenda, as the company works to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 75 percent by 2030, a goal which is on track according to PepsiCo's ESG Summary released earlier this month.