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PepsiCo's Frito-Lay Topeka, Kan., facility on April 9 became the state's first manufacturing site, and the nation's second food manufacturing site, to be awarded LEED Existing Building (EB) Gold Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), as verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI). LEED is the nation's preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.
"It's only through the efforts of our associates and business partners that we were able to retrofit this nearly 30-year-old-building and make it more environmentally friendly," said Allen Moore, technical manager, Frito-Lay Topeka. "Achieving LEED EB Gold standards is another significant step on our company's sustainability journey, and solidifies our place as a leader in Kansas and in the U.S."
"With each new LEED-certified building, we get one step closer to USGBC's vision of a sustainably-built environment within a generation," said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, U.S. Green Building Council. "As the newest member of the LEED family of green buildings, Frito-Lay Topeka is an important addition to the growing strength of the green building movement."
To achieve LEED EB Certification, the company's Topeka sustainability strategy included implementing a number of green design and construction features, water reduction technologies and practices, as well as improved waste management.
Energy reduction: The Topeka facility has reduced its natural gas consumption by 39 percent per pound of product and its electricity use by 27 percent per pound of product since 1999 by installing new technologies such as high-efficiency oven burners and new lighting systems with sensors to turn off lights when rooms are not in use.
Water reduction: The facility has reduced its water consumption by nearly 52 percent per pound of product since 1999 by implementing new operations and sanitation practices, and piloting a company-wide initiative to reduce water used in its corn cooking and transfer process.
Recycling: As of September 2009, less than 1 percent of the facility's solid waste goes to landfill. The site achieved this milestone through many initiatives including an employee-led recycling program, reusing cardboard shipping boxes multiple times, and allocating waste product for use in animal feed.
Frito-Lay Topeka has been a part of the Shawnee County community for nearly 30 years. The nearly 600,000-square-foot building sits on 188 acres of land. Frito-Lay Topeka produces some of America's favorite snacks including Lay's potato chips, Fritos corn chips, Tostitos tortilla chips, Doritos tortilla chips, and Cheetos cheese-flavored snacks.
Frito-Lay Topeka continues to invest in leading-edge technologies that will eventually reduce its environmental footprint, such as a biomass boiler that will come online later this year.
About the U.S. Green Building Council
The Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings.
With a community comprising 78 local affiliates, more than 20,000 member companies and organizations, and more than 100,000 LEED Accredited Professionals, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to soar to $60 billion by 2010. The USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students.
Buildings in the United States are responsible for 39 percent of CO2 emissions, 40 percent of energy consumption, 13 percent water consumption and 15 percent of GDP per year, making green building a source of significant economic and environmental opportunity. Greater building efficiency can meet 85 percent of future U.S. demand for energy, and a national commitment to green building has the potential to generate 2.5 million American jobs.
The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system is the preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. 35,000 projects are currently participating in the LEED system, comprising over 5.6 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 91 countries.
By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.
USGBC was co-founded by current president and CEO Rick Fedrizzi, who spent 25 years as a Fortune 500 executive. Under his 15-year leadership, the organization has become the preeminent green building, membership, policy, standards, influential, education and research organization in the nation.
About Frito-Lay North America
Frito-Lay North America is the $12 billion convenient foods business unit of PepsiCo, which is headquartered in Purchase, N.Y. PepsiCo offers the world's largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 18 different product lines that each generate more than $1 billion in annual retail sales. Its main businesses – Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana and Gatorade – also make hundreds of other foods and drinks for consumers in more than 200 countries. With more than $43 billion in 2008 revenues, PepsiCo employs 198,000 people.