Case Study

Carbon Analysis at Pepsi

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Abstract

Pepsi has a new challenge. In 2007, PepsiCo became the first consumer company to use the Carbon Reduction Label (CRL) on packets of its Walkers Crisps potato chips in the United Kingdom. Developed by the U.K.-based Carbon Trust, the CRL is meant to communicate to consumers not only the individual product's carbon footprint but also the company's overall pledge to reduce that footprint over a period of time. While not solely limited to packaging, the CRL at point of purchase is an immediately visible marker of a company's efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

In early 2009, PepsiCo again announced it had partnered with the Carbon Trust to calculate the carbon footprint of its Tropicana-brand orange juice. While the company has extolled its work online and the media, it has refrained from putting the CRL on juice cartons. Today, the company continues its carbon footprinting in its North America Beverages division. However, while PepsiCo recognizes the importance of measuring its carbon emissions - from both a cost cutting perspective as well as company-wide environmental commitment - the direct value of using a carbon label to reach consumers remains difficult to ascertain.