It may be selling a drink that's packed with chemicals and inherently presents no health benefits whatsoever, but what the hey, at least the bottle is going a little greener. PepsiCo has announced it has developed what is says is the world's first PET plastic bottle made entirely from plant-based, fully renewable resources.
The 100 percent recyclable bottle is currently made from bio-based raw materials, including switch grass, pine bark and corn husks, but Pepsi has plans to expand its repertoire of renewable sources to also include orange peels, potato peels, oat hulls and other agricultural byproducts from its foods business. .
The food and beverage company says it has identified methods to create a molecular structure that is identical to petroleum-based PET (polyethylene terephthalate), which results in a bottle that looks, feels and protects its product identically to existing PET beverage containers.
A pilot production of the new bottle is planned for 2012 and, all going well, the company will follow on with full-scale commercial production of the bottle.
As a pretty sizeable global entity, the company says it’s in a unique position to source agricultural byproducts from its associated food businesses and use them to create a more environmentally bottle for its beverages business.
Among its other eco packaging feats is the compostable bag for SunChips, and the Eco-Fina bottle, which the company says is the lightest bottle of its size among U.S. The bottle weighs only 10.9 grams and uses 50 percent less plastic than its big brother half-liter Aquafina bottles.
While we don’t have specific Pepsi consumption stats on hand, the average American consumes about 60 330 376 981 gallons of soda per year. In Kiwi terms, that’s a ridiculous 2.2837532 × 1011 litres per year, which, recycling aside, must still equate to an awful lot of plastic waste.