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Frito-Lays' Green Factory Produces Solar-Powered Cheetos


Frito-Lay, a subsidiary of PepsiCo, has improved the ecological footprint of its manufacturing plant in Casa Grande, Arizona. Renovations drastically cut down on waste, water usage, greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs. Strict recycling policies include sending food waste to farms to use as cattle feed. The following article from describes the sustainable changes made to create a greener food factory.

Friday, November 18, 2011 - 12:00pm

Will the world’s largest potato chip maker turn out to be an eco-pioneer? At the beginning of October junk food giant Frito-Lay (a subsidiary of PepsiCo) unveiled an upgraded food factory that the company claims could set a new sustainability standard for food manufacturers nationwide.

The Frito-Lay factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, a 25-year-old facility, recently underwent extensive renovations designed to significantly reduce waste, water usage, greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs. According to a Frito-Lay press release, the Casa Grande facility features a water recovery and reuse system that recycles 50 to 75 percent of the water used at the plant, thoroughly filtering the reused water to meet EPA drinking water standards. The building employs five separate solar power systems and a biomass-fueled boiler to to significantly reduce its reliance on unsustainable power sources. To reach Frito-Lay’s goal of reducing waste by 99 percent, the plant follows a strict recycling protocol and sends food waste to farms for use as cattle feed.
But is this all just corporate greenwashing? Could the creator of such fluorescent food-like substances as “XXTRA Flamin-Hot” Cheetos (Ingredients include: Monosodium glutamate, sodium diacetate, hydrolyzed corn protein, Red 40 Lake, Yellow 6 Lake, Yellow 6 and Yellow 5) and “Late Night All-Nighter Cheeseburger” Doritos (Brought to you in part by the fantastic taste of unnamed “Artificial Flavors”) really, truly be serious about turning over a new, greener leaf?
Signs point to yes.

About PepsiCo 
PepsiCo offers the world's largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 19 different product lines that generate more than $1 billion in annual retail sales each. Our main businesses -- Quaker, Tropicana, Gatorade, Frito-Lay, and Pepsi Cola -- also make hundreds of other enjoyable foods and beverages that are respected household names throughout the world. With net revenues of approximately $60 billion, PepsiCo's people are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth by investing in a healthier future for people and our planet, which we believe also means a more successful future for PepsiCo. We call this commitment Performance with Purpose: PepsiCo's promise to provide a wide range of foods and beverages for local tastes; to find innovative ways to minimize our impact on the environment, including by conserving energy and water usage, and reducing packaging volume; to provide a great workplace for our associates; and to respect, support, and invest in the local communities where we operate. For more information, please visit
Keywords: Energy | Pepsico | Sustainability | casa grande | cheetos | factory | food | frito-lay | manufacturing