ROMANIA— PepsiCo is investing another US$100 million in automated systems at its Popești-Leordeni snacks factory in Romania – on top of the US$320 million over the past decade – to double the site’s production capabilities.

The funding will go towards the construction of three production lines, an automated warehouse and further automation systems at the plant. The work at the factory is expected to be completed by 2024.

As a key production and distribution hub for its Central and Eastern European markets, Romania is an essential kingpin for the snack giant, saud Silviu Popovici, PepsiCo’s CEO for Europe.

“PepsiCo has been operating and investing in Romania for almost 30 years and we remain committed to further developing the business in the country,” he said.

“High-quality agricultural products and talented people are the basis of the growth of our business in the region. Now, as we implement PepsiCo Positive, the investments made will continue to advance our progress in the field of sustainability in Romania.”

Adrian Lăcătuș, senior commercial director of PepsiCo for the Eastern Balkans, added, “PepsiCo is in continuous development. We aim to deliver the quality our consumers expect through sustainable means and have a positive impact on the industry. ”

The Popești-Leordeni factory – inaugurated in 1995 and located just outside Romania’s capital Bucharest – is operated by Star Foods which was acquired by PepsiCo in 2006.

PepsiCo entered the Romanian market in 2004 through the acquisition of the potato chip market leader, present in Romania since 1993. The factory produces Lays potato chips and Star brand popcorn, nuts and other snacks.

The food and beverage giant has been investing in automation across a number of plants in Romania. In the last 10 years, PepsiCo has invested US$320 million in Romania, strengthening the company’s role as a regional production and distribution hub.

The new investment comes after PepsiCo completed another 5-year development plan at its US$40m soft drinks factory in Dragomirești to ramp up production capacity to 550,000 tonnes of finished products annually.

In August, PepsiCo announced it had entered an agreement to acquire a 20% stake in Romanian spring water company Aqua Carpatica.

“We will continue to invest sustainably in the Romanian market in the next five years as well, consolidating the role of PepsiCo Romania as a production and distribution centre for many markets in the region,” Lăcătuș said.

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