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Frito-Lay Modesto becomes testing ground for Zero- and Near-Zero Emission Freight Solutions

Frito-Lay Modesto Snack Plant replaces diesel-powered freight equipment with 'lab' for more sustainable solutions

Frito-Lay announced October 3, 2019 its Zero- and Near-Zero Emission Freight Facility Project in Modesto, Calif. Part of California Climate Investments (CCI), it will transform one of Frito-Lay's largest sites in the United States into an industry-leading showcase for environmentally sustainable manufacturing, warehousing and distribution.
From left to right: Matt Fenton, senior site director, Frito-Lay Modesto; Mike O'Connell, vice president, supply chain, PepsiCo; Dr. Alexander Sherriffs, board member, California Air Resources Board (CARB) and San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD); and Samir Sheikh, executive director, SVJAPCD.

October 4, 2019
Snack company Frito-Lay – a division of PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ: PEP) – aims to replace all of its existing diesel-powered freight equipment with zero-emission (ZE) and near-zero emission (NZE) technologies at its Modesto, Calif. manufacturing site.

The Modesto, Calif. Zero- and Near Zero-Emission Freight Facility Project will transform the 500,000-square-foot site – one of Frito-Lay's largest in the U.S. – into an industry-leading showcase for environmentally sustainable manufacturing, warehousing and distribution.

Vehicles deployed

Vehicles that will be deployed in the project according to Electrek and confirmed by PepsiCo:

  • Fifteen (15) heavy-duty Tesla battery electric tractors
  • Six (6) Peterbilt 220EV battery electric box trucks
  • Three (3) BYD 8Y battery electric yard tractors
  • Twelve (12) Crown battery electric forklifts powered by lithium-ion technologies
  • Thirty-Eight (38) Volvo tractors with low NOx engines powered by natural gas with renewable attributes
This initiative is part of PepsiCo's mission to reduce its absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 20 percent by 2030.

The project is a first-of-its-kind for PepsiCo and Frito-Lay and is part of California Climate Investments (CCI), a statewide program that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities. CCI funding is awarded by several state agencies including the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

Michael O'Connell, vice president of supply chain, PepsiCo:

“Frito-Lay is continuously looking for ways to reduce our environmental impact.”

“The Modesto project is indicative of our commitment to sustainable business practices that lead to innovation, increased productivity, operational excellence and business growth.”

“We are grateful for the support of San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, CARB and CCI in making this important project happen.”

“We hope this work will become an operating model for all of our facilities across the U.S., and that we act as the catalyst to accelerate adoption of alternative fuel vehicles across the industry.”
Expected to be completed in 2021, the $30.8 million Modesto project will integrate an array of commercially available and pre-commercial ZE and NZE technologies in numerous applications, among them fleet vehicles and supporting infrastructure, on-site renewable energy generation and energy storage systems.

The Modesto project will also contribute to industry knowledge of the emerging technologies by funding data collection and reporting of the project results.

Tesla Contributions

After the launch of Tesla Semi in 2017, PepsiCo placed one of the biggest orders for Tesla Semi: 100 electric trucks to add to their fleet. It looks like 15 of these 100 Tesla Semi's will be part of this project.

(Click to enlarge)

After the launch of Tesla Semi in 2017, PepsiCo placed one of the biggest orders for Tesla Semi: 100 electric trucks to add to their fleet. It looks like 15 of these 100 Tesla Semi's will be part of this project (Courtesy: Tesla)

But Tesla’s involvement in the project will go well beyond the Tesla Semi trucks.

According to PepsiCo’s filing with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, Tesla would also supply charging stations, a “large” solar array, and two energy storage systems of undisclosed sizes:

“Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) [Tesla] will deliver 15 highly anticipated Tesla Semis along with battery electric truck charging infrastructure, a large-scale solar PV system, and two energy storage systems for facility peak shaving and heavy-duty electric truck charging.”
Source: Electrek
The project is the result of a partnership with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD), which received a grant from CCI – matched by investments from Frito-Lay and American Natural Gas (ANG), as well as in-kind contributions from Café Coop – to support the Modesto sustainability initiative.

Frito-Lay has robust capabilities training for the Modesto site's existing associates to learn and operate the new, high-tech fleet equipment. The company also has a rich history of sustainability in its manufacturing and distribution operations and has delivered products for over 300 million miles with alternative fuel trucks to-date. Frito-Lay is eager to further advance its sustainability efforts with this at-scale initiative.

Alexander Sherriffs, M.D., CARB board member and San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District board member:

“Bravo to Frito-Lay for its commitment to improving air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions as an integral part of their business model.”

“These are the goals of CCI, putting Cap-and-Trade dollars back into communities to improve health, promote economic development and address climate change. Thank you, Frito-Lay, for being leaders and showing other businesses in our state and beyond how to thrive when good public health through clean air and climate solutions is a company value.”
The current ZE and NZE project is a continuation of the Modesto facility's widespread sustainability initiatives and commitment to environmental stewardship. The Modesto site sends less than 1 percent of its waste to landfill and leverages improved technologies.

PepsiCo's sustainability goals support the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and call to combat climate change and its impacts. This project marks another important milestone as PepsiCo works toward the goal of reducing absolute GHG emissions across its value chain.

Contributors to the Zero- and Near-Zero Emission Freight Facility Project includes: American Natural Gas; BYD Motors LLC; Café Coop; CALSTART; University of California, Riverside CE-CERT; ChargePoint; Crown, Gladstein Neandross & Associates (GNA); Meritor; Peterbilt; Project Clean Air; San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District; Tesla and Volvo.
Companies in this Article
Frito Lay production facility in Modesto, California
Frito-Lay North America (FLNA) includes Pepsico's snack operations in the United States and Canada where the company dominates the market with a range of savory snacks brands including Lay's, Ruffles, Doritos, Tostitos, Fritos, Cheetos and Sunchips
PepsiCo is one of the world's leading food and beverage companies with over $65 billion in net revenue in 2012 and a global portfolio of brands, including several savory snack brands.