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© Reuters. FILEPHOTO: Pepsi bottles are seen in a Pasadena supermarket, California. July 11, 2017. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

By Siddharth Cavale

(Reuters) -PepsiCo will cut back on the use of virgin plastic and expand its SodaStream carbonated-water business to more markets amid growing calls to combat climate change, although some environmental groups want the company to do more.

Pep+ is a new initiative by the beverage and food giant. It stated Wednesday that its goal was to cut down on virgin plastic per serving and increase recycled content by 50% in all of its packaging by 2030.

PepsiCo (NASDAQ) Inc. plans to promote healthier food and introduce plant-based protein snacks. This partnership will be in conjunction with Beyond Meat (NASDAQ) Inc. Chief Executive Ramon Laguarta stated that PepsiCo (NASDAQ) Inc. is targeting the early 2022 period for its first Beyond Meat products.

PepsiCo’s rival Coca-Cola is now a new target for activism because of the high amount of single-use disposable plastic waste. For the last three year, the companies have been listed as the top global polluters on Break Free From Plastic’s List.

PepsiCo consumes 2.3 million tonnes of plastic per year according to Greenpeace. Coca-Cola produces more than 100 billion single-use plastic bottles. PepsiCo is aiming to have 100% of its packaging recycled, compostable and degradable by 2025.

Graham Forbes (NYSE:), global leader of Greenpeace USA’s recycling project, stated that “there is still too much emphasis upon recycling for a business consistently ranked among the worst plastic polluters in the world.”

It is important that the company sets ambitious reuse/refill targets across all product lines and brands.

PepsiCo could not be reached immediately to respond to Greenpeace’s statement.

PepsiCo’s plastics strategy includes global scaling of its SodaStream company, Laguarta said to Reuters. PepsiCo bought SodaStream in 2018 and now makes machines, refillable cylinders, that can be used to make carbonated water or soda at home.

In a statement, the company stated that it will launch new SodaStream Professional platforms in 10 markets, and bring fresh flavors to 40 more countries.

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