California to See a Surge in Electric Trucks from Major Beverage Brand

By: Sam Watanuki | Published: May 28, 2024

PepsiCo is set to make a significant impact in California with a major expansion of its electric vehicle fleet.

Over the next few months, the company will introduce 50 Tesla Semi trucks and 75 Ford E-Transit electric vans across the state, aiming to reach net zero emissions by 2040.

Fresno Facility Leads the Way

The heart of this initiative is PepsiCo’s Fresno manufacturing and distribution facility.

White Pepsi electric semis, with the Pepsi logo down the side of the cab.


This 170,000-square-foot site will be the home base for the new Tesla Semi trucks, which will distribute products like Pepsi, Gatorade, and Aquafina.


Advanced Charging Infrastructure

To support the new fleet, the Fresno facility has installed eight 750-kilowatt Tesla chargers and two Tesla Megapack Battery Energy Storage Systems.

A car being charged at a Tesla charging station

Source: Ernie Journeys/Unsplash

These installations are crucial for keeping the electric trucks on the road and operational.

Statewide Deployment of Ford Vans

In addition to the Tesla trucks, PepsiCo will deploy 75 Ford E-Transit electric vans across 13 locations in California, according to a press release.

Exterior of a GM building/Exterior of a Ford building/Exterior of a Tesla building

Source: Shutterstock/Shutterstock/Adobe Stock

These vans will handle a variety of tasks, including sales deliveries and service support, enhancing the company’s statewide operations.

Educational Opportunities for Local Students

PepsiCo’s initiative isn’t just about sustainability; it’s also about community investment.

Teenage students in a high school classroom; one stands with books, ready to leave, while others sit at desks focused on writing

Source: javier trueba/Unsplash

The company is launching a job training program for students from Reedley College and Duncan Polytechnic High School, providing hands-on experience in electric vehicle technology and infrastructure maintenance.

Collaboration with Environmental Agencies

PepsiCo’s fleet expansion is supported by grants from the California Air Resources Board, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, and the California Energy Commission.

An image of several Pepsi cans on a small black shelf

Source: Wikimedia

These grants are part of California Climate Investments, a program aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and benefiting disadvantaged communities.


PepsiCo’s pep+ Strategy

The expansion aligns with PepsiCo’s pep+ (PepsiCo Positive) strategy, which emphasizes sustainability as a core business strategy.

A person holding a Pepsi can in their hands.

Source: Martin Péchy/Unsplash

John Dean, President of PepsiCo Beverages North America, highlighted that this move is “good for the planet, good for our business, and good for the communities we serve.”


Impact on Local Freight Efficiency

PepsiCo’s involvement with the North American Council for Freight Efficiency’s (NACFE) 2023 Run on Less Electric Depot demonstrated the effectiveness of integrating electric trucks into their operations.

An image of a large Tesla semi-truck pictured parked on the road

Source: Wikimedia

This successful demonstration provides a strong foundation for the upcoming fleet expansion.


PepsiCo's Broader Electric Fleet

The Fresno expansion isn’t PepsiCo’s first foray into electric vehicles.

Tesla’s promotional photo for the Semi electric truck

Source: Tesla

The company already operates Tesla Semis from its Sacramento facility and has a fleet of electric trucks at Frito-Lay’s Modesto site, showcasing a strong commitment to reducing its carbon footprint across multiple locations.


Support from Key Stakeholders

The expansion has garnered significant support from key stakeholders, underscoring its importance in the broader context of environmental sustainability.

A man and a woman shake hands over a wooden table after a business meeting

Source: Freepik

The project is seen as a critical step in reducing emissions and promoting cleaner transportation solutions.


Future of Sustainable Transportation

PepsiCo’s ambitious plan signals a broader trend toward sustainable transportation in the logistics and beverage industries.

Promotional photo of Tesla’s Semi, an all electric 18-wheeler

Source: @aTechES/YouTube

As more companies follow suit, California could see a significant shift towards greener, more efficient freight operations.


A Sustainable Path Forward

PepsiCo’s electric fleet expansion in California is a landmark step towards achieving net zero emissions.

Many Pepsi cans on a surface, with a close-up on a titled blue can.

Source: Ja San Miguel/Unsplash

By integrating advanced electric trucks and vans, the company is setting a precedent for sustainability, innovation, and community engagement in the logistics sector.