Pepsi Bottling Ventures will invest $35 million to add a new bottling line at its production facility in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, to help meet demand from brands including Aquafina, Lipton Tea and Nature’s Twist.
The new bottling line, expected to be operational by the end of 2024, will produce millions of cases of beverages per year, according to an announcement. The line will also be capable of producing bottles from 100% recycled materials. Pepsi Bottling Ventures is the largest privately owned bottler for PepsiCo, and is jointly owned by PepsiCo and Suntory.
The food and beverage company agreed to reduce its use of single-use packaging for a “percent of volume of beverages” by the end of 2022, it said in March. This includes the reduced use of virgin plastic across its global food and beverage portfolio.
Pepsi Bottling Ventures owns 18 bottling and distribution facilities that serve over 8 million consumers, according to its website. PepsiCo has said that retaining ownership over bottling assets gives the company a competitive advantage.
“It’s obviously more capital intensive, but I think it enables us to do things that it’s difficult for our competitors to do,” said CFO Hugh Johnston in a Q2 earnings call.
Beverage sales remain stable, CEO Ramon Laguarta said in the call. Even so, the company’s beverage unit is rapidly expanding production. The subdivision said in July it will build a 1.2 million-square-foot manufacturing facility in Colorado that will be its largest plant in the U.S. when it opens next summer.