PepsiCo invests US$64m in expanding Uruguay plant as demand for Zero-sugar offerings soars

URUGUAY – American multinational food, snack, and beverage company PepsiCo has announced it is investing US$64 million to expand its beverage concentrates plant in Uruguay’s Colonia Free Trade Zone. 

According to the maker of Pepsi, Mirinda, and 7Up soda brands, the extension of the plant’s footprint will enable PepsiCo to expand its zero-sugar offerings. 

The expansion will enable PepsiCo to meet an upsurge in demand for diet soft drinks in the past few years which has been fuelled by changing preference of consumers from beverages with high sugar content to healthier ones with low or no sugar content.  

According to market research firm Million Insights,  consumers have been preferring zero or low-calorie beverages because of increasing health concerns and this is anticipated to boost the growth of the market in the upcoming years. 

As a result, the global Diet Soft Drinks Market size is projected to reach US$5.2 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Million Insights. 

To take advantage of this opportunity, PepsiCo is expanding its Uruguay plants with most of the investment going to production rooms upgrades, expansion of water waste treatment, and an extension of the plant’s footprint.  

The Colonia Free Trade Zone plant is one of two facilities that PepsiCo has in Uruguay, where the company directly employs around 350 people.  

Expansion works are due to be completed by 2025, with plans to become fully carbon neutral by 2035, according to a statement from PepsiCo.  

The beverage concentrates facility plays a significant part in the formulation of PepsiCo’s brands, such as Pepsi, 7Up, Mirinda and Gatorade. 

PepsiCo’s second Uruguay plant, in Montevideo, has been a key site for the company for more than 60 years.  

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The beverage concentrates facility expansion will be the second investment that PepsiCo has made recently as it has also announced that it is investing more than PLN 1 billion ($262.6 million approx.) to open a new plant in Poland.  

The facility will be PepsiCo’s fifth in the country, creating 450 new jobs and exporting to over 20 European countries.  

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