PepsiCo believes compostable packaging will be the future for snack food
SunChips, a line of multigrain snacks within PepsiCo’s Frito Lay division, announced today that in 2010 it will introduce the first fully compostable snack chip bag made from plant-based materials.
The first step towards this transformational packaging will be made this month when the outer layer of packaging on SunChips snack bags will be made with a compostable, plant-based renewable material, polylactic acid (PLA). By Earth Day 2010, PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay North America division plans to rollout a package for its SunChips snacks where all layers are made from PLA material so the package is 100% compostable.
“We know environmentally-friendly packaging is a priority for our SunChips consumer,” said Gannon Jones, Vice President of Marketing at Frito-Lay North America. “Today’s launch of packaging made with 1/3 renewable materials is an important first step towards having a fully compostable chip bag in market by Earth Day 2010.”
Current snack food packaging has three layers: a printed outer layer with packaging visuals/graphics, an inner layer, which serves as a barrier to maintain the quality and integrity of the product, and a middle layer that joins the other two layers. When the packaging is 100% compostable, it will fully decompose in about 14 weeks when placed in a hot, active compost pile or bin. NatureWorks LLC is providing PepsiCo with the PLA, which is trademarked under the Ingeo name.
“Packaging is clearly the most visible interaction consumers have with Frito-Lay’s brands,” added Jay Gehring, Vice President, packaging R&D, Frito-Lay North America. “To make packaging that would interact differently in the environment we had to change the composition of packaging and invent key technologies. Using plant-based renewable materials, we have a promising solution that will transform packaging and significantly impact the billions of snack food bags produced annually.”
Once the 100% compostable bag is introduced, the company anticipates the switch will lead to reduced greenhouse gas emissions in the production of the packaging and the elimination of petroleum-based packaging material.
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