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PepsiCo to Recycle Potato Water

PepsiCo has plans to recycle the potato water extracted at four of its potato chip plants in the U.K., according to a report in the Guardian.

The company uses roughly 350,000 tons of potatoes every year and 80 percent of each potato is water that is extracted in order to produce chips. The company has managed to reduce its use of water by 45 percent from 2000 to 2008, and reduced its use an additional 14.6 percent last year. The company has pledged to disconnect four of the plants from the central water supply entirely within 10 years, although PepsiCo’s vice president for sustainability for Europe said in the report that he hopes that goal can be achieved in five years.

The factories will rely solely on water extracted from their potatoes for their supply. The company is also testing a new irrigation system that will compare moisture conditions in crop soil with local weather forecasts to more efficiently irrigate crops. The company is also trialing new crop varieties in order to move toward potato varieties that are less water-intensive to grow.

PepsiCo recently announced it is more than three-quarters toward its goal of reducing water consumption by 20 percent by 2015.

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