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Pepsi Moving To Bottles Made of Plant Material

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the dew-in-the-corn dept.

Earth 321

Master Moose writes "Pepsi unveiled a new bottle yesterday made entirely of plant material. The bottle is made from switch grass, pine bark, corn husks and other materials. Ultimately, Pepsi plans to also use orange peels, oat hulls, potato scraps and other leftovers from its food business. 'This is the beginning of the end of petroleum-based plastics,' said Allen Hershkowitz, a senior scientist with the Natural Resources Defence Council and director of its waste management project. 'When you have a company of this size making a commitment to a plant-based plastic, the market is going to respond.'"

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glass is better (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509814)

1950 environmentalism > 2011 environmentalism

Re:glass is better (3, Insightful)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509854)

I guess it's still the 1950's in Mexico, since they're still washing out and reusing glass bottles.

Re:glass is better (1)

rhook (943951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509898)

Not just Mexico, most of the world.

MAKE EM OUT OF WEED (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510144)

Ever made environmentally safe bottles... ON WEED?

Re:glass is better (1)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510022)

Glass = more weight = more diesel burned to transport

Re:glass is better (3, Interesting)

Jessified (1150003) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510182)

Glass works for beer...it's best when you use local breweries and bottling facilities, then you don't need to transport that far. Companies like Corona have laser printed labels on their glass, and they buy the return of their bottles. They wash and reuse. It's probably creates less polution than manufacturing from scratch each and every time (even if the final product is biodegradable).

I laud their efforts. I suspect glass is still a good choice as well.

Re:glass is better (1)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510378)

While you have a good point about the beer, I'm pretty sure Pepsico doesn't produce and/or distribute any beer.

Re:glass is better (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510736)

Too bad that is such a terrible beer, could non-terrible beer also use this system?

Or is it only useful for the sales of piss-water?

Re:glass is better (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510748)

Oh, look! A beer snob!

How about glass (5, Interesting)

ron_ivi (607351) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509820)

A quite renewable resource; recycles well; doesn't make your drink smell like a chemical factory over time.

I hope after these biodegradable plastic-like-plant-chemicals (that'll probably leech into your soft drink when/if the bottle gets warm), they consider glass as a material for soft drink bottle containers.

Re:How about glass (3, Interesting)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509876)

Glass is heavy and fragile and bulky and I would bet uses more energy to produce and to recycle than PET. Nothing is going to leach that isn't already. PET is PET. It's the same chemical produced from a different feedstock.

Re:How about glass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510230)

All plastics have plasticizers in them to make them flexible. The plasticizers can leach-out into foodstuffs and drinks.

Re:How about glass (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510244)

Possibly. But they'll be the same plasticizers that are in PET already. Different source of hydrocarbons, same plastic.

Re:How about glass (2)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510568)

Don't recycle it, wash and re-use it.

Re:How about glass (0)

mallyn (136041) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509880)

We don't want glass!!!!! If it's left broken on the road, it can easily cause flat tires on bicylces!!!!

Organic bottles such as these are better; there is less danger to bicycles!!

If I had my way, all glass bottles would be replaced; especially beer and wine bottles.

Whenever I get a flat on my bicycle, it's almost always caused by broken glass from bottles.

Folks; please; don't suggest going back to glass!!!!!

I don't want more flat tires!!!!

Re:How about glass (5, Funny)

xMrFishx (1956084) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509910)

Are you sure you're not popping your tyres on the exessive ammount of exclamation marks that are nearby? I hear they're quite sharp.

Re:How about glass (2, Insightful)

rhook (943951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509924)

We don't want glass!!!!!

If it's left broken on the road, it can easily cause flat tires on bicylces!!!!

Organic bottles such as these are better; there is less danger to bicycles!!

If I had my way, all glass bottles would be replaced; especially beer and wine bottles.

Whenever I get a flat on my bicycle, it's almost always caused by broken glass from bottles.

Folks; please; don't suggest going back to glass!!!!!

I don't want more flat tires!!!!

Do you realize that all petroleum products are organic? The only reason that the switch was ever made from glass to plastic is because it saves the manufacturer money on shipping costs (reduced weight).

Re:How about glass (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509950)

Thanks for the idea. I'll start tossing all glass products on the bike paths by me. The people on them do not follow the traffic rules at all. The bike path has a stop sign, not the road. So the people do not stop for the stop sign and make the cars and truck driver slam on the brakes as to not hit them.

I did check with the local police. The bike path should be stopping and waiting for car/truck traffic to clear in order to cross. Both for people on bikes and runners/joggers.

Re:How about glass (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510198)

Because we all know the solution to lawlessness by someone else is... more lawlessness by me!

And when cyclists who obey the law (yes, we exist, but we're not pulling in front of you, plus confirmation bias is a bitch, so you don't notice) see you chucking bottles in the bike path, we'll see it as a declaration of war by you cagers, and we'll lose the civility we all enjoy on the street.

Wait, there's already no civility on the street? 90+% of cagers hate all cyclists, and 90% of cyclists hate all cagers? Ok, in that case, we've all got nothing to lose but our bloody necks. Do carry on.

Re:How about glass (2)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510686)

Your use of the term 'cager' immediately declares your bias. It renders your entire post worthless. As both a driver and a cyclist I find your attitude childish.

Re:How about glass (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510322)

OTOH, as a cyclist, I've been hit once and nearly hit twice in the past year by cars rolling through their stop sign when the road I was on had no stop signs (including for the bike lane, where applicable).

It pisses me off, yes, but I don't go about sabotaging their vehicles, much less every vehicle of another class on the road. Maybe you should grow up a bit -- you don't sound like you have any business piloting a lethal missile on public roadways.

Re:How about glass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510436)

If I had my way, all glass bottles would be replaced; especially beer and wine bottles.

I've noticed that beer in glass bottles tastes a lot better than in cans. Yes, the exact same beer. Even if it's poured out into a glass. I don't know why.. I haven't seen beer in plastic bottles yet.

Re:How about glass (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510670)

Try avoiding broken glass. Glass is a LOT more environmentally friendly than plastic if reused, which it easily can be. The only reason plastic is prevalent today is it's cheaper. Fuck your damn bike if you can't bother to avoid road hazards.

Re:How about glass (3, Interesting)

Timmmm (636430) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509912)

In Africa (Kenya and Uganda at least; I've not been elsewhere), all soft drinks are sold in glass bottles. They are also reused (i.e. you refill them with drink) rather than recycled. Although for some reason the only options are fanta and coke. Coke I can understand, but fanta? Never made any sense to me...

Re:How about glass (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509932)

Fanta is made by Coke. Coke is available in all these places. Hence, so is Fanta.

Re:How about glass (1)

Timmmm (636430) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509990)

Yeah but Coca Cola make quite a bit more than Coke and Fanta, so that doesn't really explain anything:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Coca-Cola_brands [wikipedia.org]

Re:How about glass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510266)

Beverly. Now there's a drink!

Re:How about glass (5, Funny)

Kozz (7764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510178)

In Africa (Kenya and Uganda at least; I've not been elsewhere), all soft drinks are sold in glass bottles. They are also reused (i.e. you refill them with drink) rather than recycled. Although for some reason the only options are fanta and coke. Coke I can understand, but fanta? Never made any sense to me...

Agreed. Seriously, the gods must be crazy.

Re:How about glass (1)

skids (119237) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510696)

Hah! The younguns won't get that joke -- they watched the other movie of the same name instead. It had no falling coke bottle scene IIRC.

Re:How about glass (1)

DreadPiratePizz (803402) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509958)

Glass is heavy. Glass can break. Glass is more expensive.

Re:How about glass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510556)

Glass is heavy.

Extra work out. Americans need it.

Glass can break.

Weed out the some of the idiots.

Glass is more expensive.

Keep people who shouldn't be drinking it anyways from consuming it.

Re:How about glass (1)

hipp5 (1635263) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510292)

A quite renewable resource; recycles well;

Glass isn't that great for recycling. IIRC from my National Geographic issue a few years ago, recycled glass only uses 5% less energy to make than new glass. Compare that to aluminum where the recycled product uses 95% less energy to produce than from virgin materials. If you're looking to have a highly-recyclable product then aluminum is the way to go. Where glass is good is when you're reusing, but that brings up a whole question of logistics. Glass also has the issue of shipping weight and broken bottles all over the place.

Re:How about glass (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510486)

> Glass isn't that great for recycling.

Reuse is better than recycle. And glass is good for that. Pepsi and Coke know this from history.

Re:How about glass (4, Insightful)

Solandri (704621) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510494)

recycled glass only uses 5% less energy to make than new glass. Compare that to aluminum where the recycled product uses 95% less energy to produce than from virgin materials. If you're looking to have a highly-recyclable product then aluminum is the way to go.

That's the wrong stat to be looking at. Recycled aluminum uses much less energy than producing new aluminum because aluminum production requires huge amounts of energy. So aluminum may only require 5% of its creation energy to recycle, but that's 5% of a huge number. Glass' 95% to recycle is 95% of a small number.

You want to be comparing the raw amount of energy needed to recycle. How many joules for a glass bottle, how many joules for an aluminum can.

Re:How about glass (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510520)

That percentage doesnt mean much. How much energy does it take to recycle aluminum? How much energy does it take to recycle glass? If the former is more than the latter, the fact that its "only 5%" is irrelevant.

Re:How about glass (1)

Reilaos (1544173) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510434)

Glass is heavy -- means higher transportation costs, higher damages to the envireonment thereof.
Glass is nonbiodegradeable -- Good recycling, bad for the more likely event that it just gets thrown away, or dumped on the side of the street

Re:How about glass (2)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510588)

Glass is nonbiodegradeable

Glass degrades by the same process as stone. It will, over time, be worn down. More importantly, it is chemically neutral in nature and not easily mistaken for food.

Whereas plastic just stays in the same form constantly and is mistaken for food, or left out in the ocean will break down into smaller and smaller pieces and be mistaken for plankton, killing the animals that try to eat it.

Re:How about glass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510504)

we had them in the time before the 90's it was the 80s when they started this plastic bottles BS.

Disposal (3, Insightful)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509826)

How do we dispose of them? Are they as recyclable as petroleum-based plastics?

Also, are they biodegradable?

Re:Disposal (4, Informative)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509892)

Same as before. Yes. No.

The plastic is the same as it always was, the source material is all that's different. This is better marketing through sounds/feels good science, not through environmentalism. Hell, these bottles are going to use an order of magnitude more energy and other resources to produce than the old fashioned kind, so...yay?

Re:Disposal (1)

RareButSeriousSideEf (968810) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510248)

Darn, and I was hoping that taking plastics out of the buyers' market for petroleum would reduce demand and lower prices. Why do so many green solutions seem to reduce efficiency and increase energy usage when the end-to-end cycle is considered?

Re:Disposal (1)

Max Littlemore (1001285) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510466)

Why do so many green solutions seem to reduce efficiency and increase energy usage when the end-to-end cycle is considered? --

Because the old way of doing things never measures the full end to end cost.

If you want to measure the full cost of production of a petroleum sourced PET bottle, you need to take into account the initial production of biomass and then at least a couple of hundred thousand years of high pressure cellaring. When you look at it like that, the green solutions look cheap,

Re:Disposal (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510496)

Why do so many green solutions seem to reduce efficiency and increase energy usage when the end-to-end cycle is considered?

Largely because of naysayers who distort facts [thetorquereport.com] as necessary to reach that conclusion, or simply assume it to be the case with or without any evidence, such as the post you replied to. ("Order of magnitude" does have an actual definition.)

Re:Disposal (1)

inpher (1788434) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509902)

They are as recyclable as any other PET bottle because they are made from PET. Dispose of them like you normally do.

Re:Disposal (2)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509922)

Also, are they biodegradable?

Biodegradeable doesn't always mean what we think it means.
A lot of stuff we put in garbage dumps can remain perfectly preserved for a hundred years.
The question is not "is the bottle biodegradeable" but "will it biodegrade without sunlight or oxygen"

Re:Disposal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509984)

Yes they are able to be composted. The quote is in a bacteria rich environment they will compost/breakdown in about 4 years.

Its as disposable as PET? (4, Informative)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510014)

How do we dispose of them? Are they as recyclable as petroleum-based plastics? Also, are they biodegradable?

According to the article: "Pepsi says it is the world's first bottle of a common type of plastic called PET made entirely of plant materials." PET, Polyethylene terephthalate [wikipedia.org] , made from petroleum or from food waste is still the same molecule. It should perform the same regardless of what it is made from.

What about biodegradability / recyclability? (2)

gweilo8888 (921799) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509834)

The source of the original material is just one part of the equation. Just as important to anybody who cares about the environment is how efficiently the product can be recycled, and whether or not it biodegrades at a reasonable rate. The article mentions neither, and so I'll ask here. Is Pepsi's new bottle as good or better than existing plastics in this area, or are we improving in one area for either marketing and financial reasons, at the detriment of others that are equally important?

Re:What about biodegradability / recyclability? (1)

Neutral_Observer (1409941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509882)

They aren't biodegradable, they are edible!

Re:What about biodegradability / recyclability? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510224)

As you may already have found out from comments above: they're not particularly biodegradable, as they're made of PET.

And no, while Neutral_Observer says they were "edible", I'd say they're not even drinkable ...

Re:What about biodegradability / recyclability? (1)

gweilo8888 (921799) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510352)

Much appreciated. I missed the reference to PET in the article, and the other comments were submitted within seconds of mine, but I did see them after posting. Sounds like it's likely a marketing and/or financial decision, with little if any benefit for the environment, although I missed some other points myself. Namely, compared to petroleum-derived PET, how much more or less energy does this plant-derived PET take to make, how much more or less byproducts does it result in, and how useful or bad are those byproducts... Certainly, there's a huge amount we need to know to determine whether this move by Pepsi is good, bad, or indifferent -- probably far more than the average consumer would even understand. This puff piece from the NZ Herald tells us nothing, except that they'll run pretty much anything a marketing droid offers them a good spin on.

Just one problem... (1, Insightful)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509872)

Trading plastic bottles made from petroleum for plastic bottles made from FOOD isn't much of a win. The end product is the EXACT SAME PLASTIC that we're filling up landfills with right now, just made from food sources. Well done Pepsi...you missed the point entirely, but I'm confident you can still spin it into a positive to the organic/vegan/hippie crowd.

Re:Just one problem... (5, Interesting)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509918)

No, this is still a major improvement. Less oil usage is good. Less food waste in landfills is good. Less dependency on foreign oil is good, at least for the US's economy. Hell, just because of that, you get minor reductions in income, and thus political power, to a variety of less-than-wholesome Middle-East countries. Major? No. A step forward? Hells yes.

Besides, in case you hadn't noticed, plastic is recyclable. I've got an empty bottle of Mt. Dew sitting beside me - it's going into the recycle bin literally as soon as I finish typing this. No landfill usage at all.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510026)

Less oil usage is good.

Is this true? The less oil that goes into plastics, the cheaper it becomes, and the longer it will take for economic pressures to force the world into a renewable electric-based regime. What's more, more of that oil will be refined and burned, rather than processed into plastics and buried.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510070)

this is almost a jevons paradox.

still, plastic amounts to only 5% of petroleum usage (in US). once plastic has enough relative petroleum-share to really matter, we'll probably be well on our way to alternative fuels as well.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Brett Buck (811747) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510078)

Excellent example that proves my point!

Re:Just one problem... (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510134)

Wouldn't it be great to make plastic after we run out of oil?

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Jumperalex (185007) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510424)

See, I KNEW I was helping win the environmental battle by NOT recycling ANYTHING. The faster we run out of it the faster we can't pollute the environment with it. It all makes perfect sense now. Thank you for opening my eyes.

Re:Just one problem... (5, Interesting)

The Grim Reefer2 (1195989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510186)

No, this is still a major improvement. Less oil usage is good. Less food waste in landfills is good. Less dependency on foreign oil is good, at least for the US's economy.

Are you sure about that? How much more energy is it going to take to make these? If it's more, then where is that energy coming from? Are the raw materials heavier to transport than the current ones? What waste by-products are produced in doing this? What can be done with those by-products?

I don't know the answers to any of these questions. Before you make statements like you did, you may want to look into these, and many other questions first. The end result may be that they use even more petroleum products than the current containers. Or create toxic leftovers in the process.

Are you old enough to remember the styrofoam clam-shells McDonalds sandwiches were served in? Those were just "evil" according to environmentalists. Except they kept you food warmer and could be recycled into all kinds of things. But they were replaced by wax coated paper that could not be recycled. The environmentalists were happier with the paper that could go nowhere other than a landfill and the food is not only crappy, but gets cold even sooner.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Lost Dragon (632401) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510640)

It's about saving Pepsi money. Pepsi-Co merged with Frito Lay. If they can use scrap like corn husks and potato peels (which they already make in abundance) to create plastic bottles then they can essentially supply themselves with their own building materials and eliminate or reduce the need to deal with oil suppliers.

Re:Just one problem... (4, Informative)

mattack2 (1165421) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510684)

Are you old enough to remember the styrofoam clam-shells McDonalds sandwiches were served in? Those were just "evil" according to environmentalists. Except they kept you food warmer and could be recycled into all kinds of things.

[citation needed]

Styrofoam (which actually is AFAIK not technically what these were, and I don't mean brand-name-wise, but it's what people call that kind of foam) seems to be one of the HARDER things to recycle.. and food contaminated products (except for bottles & cans) seems to not be recyclable either.

While it's not foam, even pizza boxes for example can't be recycled because they're food contaminated.

(I've largely stopped buying TV dinners since I can't recycle the plastic trays.)

Re:Just one problem... (2)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510200)

Less oil use is good, but using organic sources means encouraging the cultivation of those plants instead of others. Plowing under a diverse ecosystem to plant many acres of nothing but switchgrass or trash paper pine is still a negative consequence. Using corn husks is good, but we already have reductions in corn being used for food so that more can be used as an Ethanol source, and the world needs food as well as less oil dependency. The full array of consequences is always going to be mixed at best. Ultimately, processes like this will have the best impact if they can use a wide variety of organic sources and so a manufacturer can offer to buy up something such as wild Kudzu to reduce or eliminate it from areas where it should never have spread, rather than make people deliberately cultivate the same Kudzu because a major industrial process is now dependent on it. Hopefully Pepsi can use this to target some plants that have been exported way outside of their normal ecosystems, and actually restore some diversity for native plants, rather than promoting more monocultures.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510356)

food in landfills breaks down farely rapidly, plastic does not. They are turning a biodegradable product into a non biodegradable product. While it is a step up from using oil, it is also a step backwards for landfills etc.

Re:Just one problem... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509962)

Switch grass? Pine bark? Corn husks? I'm thinking no one ever comes to a second dinner at your house.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Brett Buck (811747) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509974)

No it isn't, stop being a putz. They solved *half* the total problem, which is a hell of a lot more than you did. Using food waste is a HUGE improvement over petroleum. And PET containers are imminently recyclable, and the entire idea is PRACTICAL and economically feasible, which puts it far ahead of the game from most foolishly impractical eco-nut ideas.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510028)

"foolishly impractical ... ideas."

This *is* /., where foolishly impractical will be on the desktop next year, for sure, this time.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509980)

could be helpful in the long run. since plastics account for ~5% of petroleum consumption, the market is driven by petroleum-as-fuel. once the market responds to that, there may be very little left for plastics. there are fuel alternatives in development, so it should be just as important to develop alternative feedstocks for plastic (something we're, at least, behind in, leaving aside whether it is even possible in all cases).

Re:Just one problem... (2)

currently_awake (1248758) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510048)

The base resource the new bottles are made from is waste they previously paid to throw away, now it's useful and customers pay to take it away. That's a win. It also reduces the effects of higher oil prices, as they don't use it (as much) anymore.

Re:Just one problem... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510240)

of course you are assuming they they only will use food waste.

PepsiCo said it plans to test the product in 2012 in a few hundred thousand bottles. Once it is sure it can successfully produce the bottle at that scale, it will begin converting all its products over.

That could mean a switch of billions of bottles sold each year.

Can't wait for them to start growing the stuff they need and pushing out other crops which are.. gasp.. eaten.

Re:Just one problem... (1)

mattack2 (1165421) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510618)

Is it FOOD or is it food-waste? If it's stuff that would be thrown away otherwise (and not fed to animals perhaps), then I still think it would be 'less bad' than oil-based plastics.. and yes, I did see other responses already denying it would be good to use less oil for this purpose.

This will work great (1)

dmomo (256005) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509896)

Until they find out that this wonderfully Wonka-worthy craze-tastic compostable compound is biodegradable in anything... including soda pop!

Re:This will work great (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509966)

or they find out bacteria find the containers tasty and that raises leaking issues at the best and food poisoning fatalities at the worst.

Re:This will work great (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510650)

The chemical the bottles are made out of is PET. I think they have some experience with the characteristics of PET.

babys can digest crude oil, fish digest plastic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509904)

most of us, can do neither. biodispersable?

Sunchips (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509920)

They moved away from foil/plastic to a bag that would decompose quickly... not sure what it was made of.

I liked Sunchips, but the bag was so terrible I stopped buying them. Fortunately, they've switched back to having the original bag, with a crappy bag as an option for those people who can put up with the terrible, terrible quality of the eco-friendly bag.

The moral, I guess, is that going green is fine if your product is as good as the non-green alternative. You can only convince a small fraction of the world to buy an inferior product out of guilt or smugness.

Will they be tossed everywhere now? (1)

12AU7A (676539) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509926)

Now that the bottles are fully biodegradable, will people have no guilt about tossing them everywhere knowing they will biodegrade? Sounds like it will just generate more litter.

Re:Will they be tossed everywhere now? (3, Informative)

proverbialcow (177020) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509954)

Biodegradable since when? They're just weaning themselves off petroleum; the end product is exactly the same.

Re:Will they be tossed everywhere now? (1)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510090)

The kind of person who litters is hardly likely to look at closely at the composition of the packaging before tossing it over their shoulder. Littering is an act of thoughtlessness, not a carefully considered risk management assessment.

I saw this same argument when they introduced biodegradable plastic bags at supermarkets in my area. The streets were going to be awash with bags. Guess what? It made no difference at all.

Ah great (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35509928)

Let's put the salmonella and e coli into the bottle itself.

Re:Ah great (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510120)

salmonella, pepsi, same effect.

Not sure I like the idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509964)

What about using GLASS like in the past? Glass is a much better product to recycle and will not "leak" chemicals into the drink like plastics (organic or petroleum based) do.

One tiny little flaw (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35509972)

It's not a big deal, but in order to get all these agricultural by-products in the quantities needed to be able to use scraps to make bottles, you kind of need a solid oil-based infrastructure for growing, harvesting and transporting all that food in the first place.

But hey, no worries, the pressing issue of bottling carbonated sugar water has been solved! Carry on! Carry on!

Re:One tiny little flaw (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510034)

And? Instead of letting the agricultural byproducts go to waste or composting them or whatever, they are recycling them as packaging that they were going to use oil for. Now that oil can stay safely tucked away under the sand... or get burned by a bitchin Camero.

Re:One tiny little flaw (1)

VirginMary (123020) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510170)

Yes, you're a genius! Because why would we want to solve one problem if there are still other problems left? If we can replace some plastics that were previously produced from fossil fuels with those produced from food waste that's obviously wrong if we're still left with other areas where we're *currently* relying on fossil fuels. Wow! I can only marvel at your intelligence! It's obviously either all or nothing. Maybe you should kill yourself because you're so smart you're making the rest of us feel stupid. Or, more likely, you're just trolling. In that case, good job!

Re:One tiny little flaw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510474)

Do you seriously not understand the point? The point is that without oil THERE WON'T BE ANY EXTRA FOOD TO MAKE SCRAPS TO MAKE BOTTLES. Jesus. Christ.

The worst part is your sig "When 1person suffers from a delusion,it is called insanity.When many people suffer from a delusion,it is called religion". You have the delusion that the way world is now can continue without oil! My God!

That was some goood corn! (1)

mug funky (910186) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510016)

hmm... i wonder when North American corn production will improve to the point where we can ACTUALLY EAT IT?

not being an oil industry fanboy or anything, but using potentially viable food to package sugarwater seems a little... myopic.

Re:That was some goood corn! (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510060)

The article specifically says they use corn husks. Do you eat the husk?

Re:That was some goood corn! (1)

ekgringo (693136) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510360)

The tamale industry will be devastated.

Re:That was some goood corn! (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510412)

Nah, no worries. They've developed a petrochemical-derived replacement tamale wrapper that should be on the market in a few months.

Re:That was some goood corn! (3, Insightful)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510096)

Why? It's not like there's a lack of food worldwide, there's just a vast amount of corruption in the supply chain preventing it from reaching some places where it's needed.

made entirely of plant material (4, Funny)

flaming error (1041742) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510108)

Sounds like the bottle is more suitable for human consumption than its contents.

Thank Dr. Sherry Rogers (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510190)

Sherry Rogers was one of the first researchers to publish the effects of chemicals from plastics leaching into food and drinks. I was reading about this about 15 years ago in some of her publications. Another thing she helped shoot down was premarin, a woman's hormone which was eventually shown to cause cancer. I'm a little prejudiced since she figured out I was full of heavy metal and thereby saved my life, but that's just me. Just google her, she's a good read.

Re:Thank Dr. Sherry Rogers (1)

wampus (1932) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510206)

Does she pay you to search for "plastic" and related terms and then sing her praises?

auto, aluminum, other plants being disassembled (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510238)

could make titanium bottles. light. bullet proof. we smelt worse stuff?

Re:auto, aluminum, other plants being disassembled (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35510276)

We could do worse, so we should do worse!
Titanium cans of the same dimensions will still not be very strong and cost a shitload more.

Hmm... (1)

tool462 (677306) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510306)

Corn syrup on the inside, corn husks on the outside.

Might as well skip the middle man and just go pick some corn at the nearest farm.

Early Man Made Containers Of Clay! (1)

littlewink (996298) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510326)

Now that's biodegradable!

I want my clay Pepsi!

oil is plants too (1)

scantics (2016710) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510338)

Strictly speaking, you could count phytoplankton as a plant and since that's what most of our oil is made from, they were already making their bottles out of plants!

I'll get this out of the way (1)

davidbrit2 (775091) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510512)

Advocates say the change could substantially improve the flavor of PepsiCo soft drinks.

PET bottles? (1)

MasaMuneCyrus (779918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35510584)

Japan has been using these for years. In fact, while we usually call our bottles "24 oz. bottles", they call their standard 500 ml bottles "PET bottles" (of course due to the fact that they're made of PET plastic). From what I understand (little), they're also 100% recyclable like aluminum.

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