Water recycling has helped food and beverage giant PepsiCo reduce water and energy related costs by $45 million in 2011 and won the organisation the Stockholm Industry Water Award being presented today.
Food and beverage production has come under scrutiny recently, with research from the Twente Water Centre claiming that 1kg of chocolate requires 24,000 litres of water to produce and the same for 1kg of orange juice.
As well as its pepsi soft drink, PepsiCo also produces Lays crisps, Quaker oats and Tropicana fruit juice, all of which require substantial water to manufacture.
The Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), organisers of the World Water Week taking place this week, cited that the company developed “i-crop” precision-farming technology to monitor, manage and reduce water use and carbon emissions.
PepsiCo also was also praised for using a resource conservation tool called ReCon that allows manufacturing facilities to conduct self-audits of their water management practises.
Furthermore, a “near net zero plant” built in Casa Grande, Arizona was quoted as running primarily on renewable energy sources and recycling up to 75% of its water, while sending zero waste to landfill.
Requirements for water and wastewater treatment technologies in the global food and beverage market are also leading to huge opportunities for the water sector. Industry analysts Frost & Sullivan estimate that the market for technologies, as well as design, engineering, operation and maintenance expertise has reached almost US$3 billion. This figure is expected to grow to US$4.8 by 2020 (see WWi article).