Potatoes for Walkers crisps are now grown with half the amount of water and carbon than five years ago.
This is the result of our ‘50 in 5’project where our aim was to cut the amount of water used and the carbon emissions produced by 50% over the course of five years at our potato farms based in water stressed areas.
Today, we are pleased to say we have achieved this target. "The 50 in 5 project is an excellent example of British talent creating innovative, pioneering technology that is now transforming agriculture both in the UK and beyond. I congratulate PepsiCo, its partners and farmers on their achievements and look forward to exploring opportunities to build on this success.” - Environment Secretary, Andrea Leadsom
PepsiCo’s Agricultural Sustainability Manager, Mark Pettigrew said: “We’re very proud to have met our ’50 in 5’ target. This programme really demonstrates how businesses can work across the supply chain to minimise impact on the environment.”
How did we achieve our target?
We collaborated with world leading academics and applied state of the art technology to help around 100 Walkers crisps farmers use energy and water more efficiently.
To reduce water usage across our potato farms, we harnessed the technology of iCrop.
This was developed with Cambridge University, and allows our farmers to measure the moisture levels in soil and track this against weather reports so they know when it’s going to rain next. With this information, farmers can judge exactly when to water crops and how much water to use. This reduces water waste, saves money, and produces more “crop per drop” of water. Cool Farm Tool
was another key piece of technology that was essential to meeting our targets.
Developed in partnership with The University of Aberdeen, farmers can use this carbon calculator to easily understand their carbon emissions across their whole farm and develop strategies to limit their impact on the environment.
Who helped us achieve our target?
We wouldn’t have achieved our targets without the dedication of our farmers based in water stressed areas who took part in the project.
One of our growers, Gavin Janaway, has been growing potatoes for Walkers for almost 40 years at Whitewater Farm in Hampshire. Gavin is just one of the many farmers we worked with, and his passion for developing and improving the supply chain resonates across all the farms that supply PepsiCo.
“As farmers across the UK are challenged by more frequent extremities of weather and increasingly scarce resources, it is now more important than ever for farms to be more sustainable. It is the responsibility of all stakeholders in the supply chain to care for the environment and working in partnership is the way forward for sustainable farming. This initiative has been crucial in helping us achieve that, reducing our water and carbon, and improving our yields.”
We are proud to be helping develop and implement more sustainable ways to farm, and we are applying the 50 in 5 principles to other areas of our business.
By 2030 PepsiCo aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the company’s value chain by 20%. We are also targeting a 15% improvement in water efficiency across our direct agricultural supply chain in water stressed areas by 2025.
Meet the Smart Potato to understand how ‘50 in 5’ worked