PepsiCo claims that it has developed the world's first polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic bottle made entirely from plant-based, fully renewable resources including switch grass, pine bark and corn husks. The bottle not only offers a significantly reduced carbon footprint compared to petroleum-based PET, but is also 100 percent recyclable.
The company says that by combining biological and chemical processes it has come up with a way to create a molecular structure that is identical to petroleum-based PET using plant-based materials, resulting in a bottle that looks and feels identical to current PET bottles. In the future, it hopes to expand the renewable resources used to create the bottles to include orange peels, potato peels, oat hulls and other agricultural byproducts from its food business.
PepsiCo says it will pilot production of the new bottle in 2012 and upon the expected successful completion of the pilot intends to move directly into full-scale commercialization.