As a part of its Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) program, PepsiCo India announced the milestone of achieving 100% PET collection and recycling for the State of Maharashtra. PepsiCo India worked with GEM Enviro Management, a waste management company and set up 100 collection points across 36 districts of Maharashtra for the effective recycling of used PET bottles. The program worked on strengthening the existing informal collection network involving more than 10,000 waste-pickers and ensuring higher income by incentivizing collection efforts.
To celebrate this achievement, PepsiCo India and GEM Enviro in presence of senior officials from Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), organized ‘Nagpur Cleanathon’ at Ambazari lake garden. The cleaning drive is part of an effort to continue the momentum of encouraging all stakeholders to collectively come forward and work towards responsible management of post-consumer plastic waste.
Nanda Jichkar, mayor of Nagpur city, Ram Joshi, Hon’ble Additional Municipal Commissioner, Nagpur Municipal corporation; Hema Deshpande, sub-regional officer at Maharashtra Pollution Control Board; Sachin Sharma, director, GEM Enviro and Juhi Gupta, head-Sustainability, PepsiCo India participated in the ‘Nagpur Cleanathon’ cleaning drive. Additionally, the drive also witnessed an overwhelming response from 100 volunteers, college students and professors.
Nagpur Cleanathon also included Nukkad Natak (street theatre) performances, poster competition, art exhibition and recycling kiosk to showcase the items made of recycled PET.
Speaking at the occasion, Nanda Jichkar said, “I am so glad to witness such a great response at Nagpur Cleanathon. From electric vehicles to recycling plants, the city of Nagpur is proactively working towards making it clean and green.” She further urged all the students to become plastic brand ambassadors and spread the message of reducing, recycling and reinventing plastic wherever they go.
Commenting on the occasion, Juhi Gupta said, “At PepsiCo India, we have been taking a proactive approach to address the issue of plastic waste, and as part of our Winning with Purpose vision, we’re striving to help build a world where plastics need never become waste. As part of the same vision, we have been actively working across multiple states to collect, segregate, & sustainably manage the equivalent of 100% of our plastic packaging by 2021. Maharashtra is the second city after Delhi to achieve 100% PET Recycling target.”
Gupta further added, “The Cleanathon is aligned with Govt of India’s ‘Swachhta Hi Sewa’ campaign, that focusses on plastic waste management in the country through nationwide Shramdaan on October 2, 2019. We are encouraged by the kind of response received from college students to clean the Ambazari lake garden. Such collection drives will go a long way towards creating mass awareness on plastic waste management and making Nagpur cleaner and greener.”
Sachin Sharma said, “Our partnership with PepsiCo has been highly productive. We have been working together from the last year to enable greater recycling of used PET packaging in the city. We have proactively established collection centers, collection points across all districts of Maharashtra to collect PET plastic waste and recycle the same into utilitarian products.”
In 2018-19, under EPR program, GEM Enviro on behalf of PepsiCo India collected 6500 metric tons of post-consumer PET. The collected PET was 100% recycled ensuring no landfill.
*These numbers are based on the EPR certificates issued by GEM Enviro, which have been submitted by PepsiCo with the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB).