Agência para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal


PepsiCo Portugal has started a new project which converts waste to renewable energy at its snack food plant in Carregado, a first for PepsiCo in Southern Europe.

The renewable energy will run lines across the plant.


The project features a new biodigester that will transform organic waste into biogas with a total investment of €7.5m. The project will begin construction in April this year.


Besides achieving a 30% reduction in carbon emissions at the Carregado plant, the biodigester will also contribute to reduce gas consumption by allowing the facility to use the biogas produced during the process of anaerobic digestion.


The biogas is then used directly as fuel in the various stages of production, as well as for sanitizing the production lines and heating the sanitary waters in the shower rooms and cafeteria.


The new biodigester will use the sludge produced at the plant’s treatment plant and potato peelings, as well as other food waste that is unfit for consumption.


This waste is pre-treated and converted into a clean organic compound that is then turned into biogas through an anaerobic process.


The biogas will be a direct substitute for natural gas and will be pre-treated in a purification plant that converts the biogas into biomethane.


Katharina Stenholm, PepsiCo Europe’s chief sustainability officer, said: “We are proud to start the year with announcing this new biodigester, a first for PepsiCo in Southern Europe. Now, we will accelerate collaboration with our partners to ensure we have the right infrastructure and eco-systems to deliver positive change across the value chain.”


Nelson Sousa, Plant Manager for PepsiCo in Portugal, added: “We hope this project will be a case study showing PepsiCo’s sustainability best practices at a European level, and also be an example of circularity and reconversion at a local level, since the project hopes to use waste from outside our plant in the future”.


PepsiCo has pledged to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 40% by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2040, a decade earlier than envisaged in the Paris Agreement.