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The 2012 Stockholm Industry Water Award was awarded to PepsiCo on Aug 28 during "World Water Week" in the Swedish capital in recognition of its stewardship initiatives.
The award honors contributions in the business sector to sustainable water management, improved performance in production processes and innovative approaches in technologies.
PepsiCo was recognized for unparalleled steps in conserving water across its business operations and agricultural supply chain.
As a global food and beverage leader, PepsiCo has improved its global water use efficiency by more than 20 percent per unit of production, reaching its goal four years early.
By deploying a water management system throughout its manufacturing facilities, it conserved nearly 16 billion liters of water in 2011 through the application of specialized equipment and by recycling.
"This award is validation of our water conservation efforts," said Indra Nooyi, chairman of PepsiCo. "Reducing our water usage drives cost reductions and reduces our overall environmental footprint, so we're innovating to make the most of every drop of water used."
With its water stewardship initiatives, the cost for water and energy at PepsiCo fell by more than $45 million in 2011 from 2006.
"These water reduction efforts are part of the overall 'Performance with Purpose' strategy at PepsiCo, which includes its promise to provide a wide range of foods and beverages for local tastes; to find innovative ways to minimize the impact on the environment by reducing packaging and conserving energy and water, and to provide a great workplace for associates as well as to support and invest in the local communities where PepsiCo operates", said Nooyi.
"PepsiCo has successfully reduced water consumption in its production, and extended its commitment beyond the company's own operations to help solve water challenges on a broad scale," the Stockholm International Water Institute Award jury said on the ceremony.
"PepsiCo's water commitment has not stopped at the factory walls as the company has saved water all along its agricultural supply chain," the jury added.
PepsiCo has provided access to safe water for more than a million people through work by the PepsiCo Foundation and partners including Water.org, the Columbia Water Center, Safe Water Network, China Women's Development Foundation and the Inter-American Development Bank.
It has also made great efforts to reduce water use in the company's agricultural supply chain by using new irrigation technologies and inventing ways to help farmers deliver fertilizer and water to crops at the most efficient time.
Developed by PepsiCo and the Cambridge University, "i-crop" precision farming technology enables PepsiCo's farmers to monitor, manage and reduce their water use and carbon emissions, as well as maximize potential yield and quality.
The initial trials of i-crop across 46 PepsiCo's UK potato farms have already seen a 13 percent increase in crop yield and 8 percent reduction in water usage, the SIWI said.
In addition, direct seeding - an agronomic practice in paddy cultivation - allows the seed to be planted directly into the ground bypassing the nursery, which removes the need for flood irrigation, reducing water use by as much as 30 percent.
Other tools such as resource conservation and an approach called near net zero planting have also been popularized by PepsiCo, helping conserve and recycle water along the supply chain.
(China Daily 09/05/2012 page16)