US-based food and beverage company PepsiCo opened its new global innovation centre for the baked goods categories in June 2014. The facility is located in the city of Apodaca in Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

The new baking facility is an advanced research and development centre where food experts in Mexico and across the globe work on creating new baked products with healthier choices for improving consumer satisfaction.

Location of PepsiCo’s baking centre

Based in Arizona, the facility turns approximately 500,000 potatoes into potato chips every day.

In January 2014, PepsiCo planned to make a $5bn investment in Mexico over a period of five years to expand its food and beverage business in Mexico. The five-year investment plan aims at introducing new brands and brand building, infrastructural facilities, agriculture programmes for the benefit of local farmers and community services. It is expected to create approximately 4,000 new job opportunities in the Mexican economy.

Mexico, PepsiCo’s third biggest market, was chosen for its long-term economic growth opportunities and growing number of middle-class consumers.

Details of Nuevo Leon baking innovation centre

The innovation centre is expected to help PepsiCo introduce new product innovations across its brand portfolio. It will provide employment to around 100 people from diverse backgrounds, including chefs, nutritionists, food scientists and baking technology experts.

The centre includes an advanced culinary centre and development laboratories for innovations across the company’s baking brand portfolio. In addition, it will have a pilot manufacturing plant on-site facilitating product developers and engineers test new ideas immediately.

"Products developed by the new facility will be exported to more than 200 countries where PepsiCo has operations.;

Products developed by the new facility will be exported to more than 200 countries where PepsiCo has operations. The innovation centre also aims to create new markets for its products in Mexico, as well as around the world by introducing regional flavours using local ingredients and unique product shapes.

The centre has partnered with PepsiCo businesses for different projects in the US, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Poland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Malaysia and Thailand. These projects are focused on developing the health-conscious foods such as Quaker Oat & Yogurt Sandwich Biscuit developed for the North American market.

Sustainability features

The facility is built according to Mexican Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards. It will conserve energy and reduce operating costs using innovative technologies and processes.

It has achieved ‘Centre of Excellence’ status within Pepsico’s global operations. Other facilities in this category include a beverage innovation centre in New York, a snacks innovation centre in Texas, an oats innovation centre in Illinois, a fruit and vegetable innovation centre in Germany and an Asian food and beverage innovation centre in China.

Marketing commentary

PepsiCo is a global leader in food and beverages and has a product portfolio that includes 22 brands. Some of its major brands include Quaker, Tropicana, Gatorade, and Frito-Lay.

PepsiCo has been selling its products in Mexico since 1907. PepsiCo Mexico’s business units comprise of Sabritas, Sonric’s, Gamesa, Quaker, Pepsi and Gatorade.

NRI Energy Technology