Pepsi scraps 100% recycled plastic bottles amid supply struggles

PepsiCo has rolled back its use of 100% rPET bottles, despite committing to transition all of its ready to drink products to recycled plastic by the end of the year.

A PepsiCo spokesperson confirmed that the FMCG giant had been making “good progress” towards the target, which was originally launched in 2020, and had moved some of its products into 100% rPET by the end of last year,

According to The Grocer,  it is understood despite the FMCG giant facing sufficient supplier capacity to convert clean and processed plastic waste into new bottles at the start of 2022, demand has “quickly begun to outstrip supply in the ensuing months”.

READ MORE: Pepsi poaches Danone’s Katharina Stenholm as new CSO

The spokesperson confirmed that the company was “facing some supply issues which has meant that we have had to lower the percentage of rPET used across these products”, adding the Pepsi, Lipton and 7up owner was “working hard to establish additional supply”.

However, its smoothie brand Naked is still being sold in 100% rPET bottles, having switched in 2020.

The move follows the introduction of the plastics tax in April this year, which applies a £200 per tonne levy on all plastic packaging manufactured or imported into the UK that contains less than 30% recycled plastic.

In May this year, it was revealed Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Heineken cans made up 23% of branded litter found by volunteers during a UK environmental clean-up project.

According to the third annual Planet Patrol report, over half (51%) of identifiable litter can be traced back to just 10 brands, including Coca-Cola, Cadbury’sRed BullWalkersLucozade, Stella Artois, TescoBudweiser and Strongbow.

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