PepsiCo hires 6,000 employees, provides additional compensation to workers on frontline of pandemic
PepsiCo, the second largest global packaged food company by net revenue in 2019, owns a portfolio of brands which includes Frito Lay, Quaker, Gatorade, and Tropicana, each of which generated over $1bn in estimated annual retail sales last year, according to the company.
"There's hardly a pantry in America that does not have a Frito-Lay and Quaker product, and in recent weeks, providing those products has become increasingly challenging," said Steven Williams, chief executive officer of PepsiCo Foods North America.
"Our frontline employees – the people you see stocking your favorite bags of chips or canisters of oats, the people driving those products there and the ones originally making them in plants across the country – are the backbone of PepsiCo Foods and we appreciate their heroic efforts."
"We know our products on store shelves provide a sense of stability and normalcy to consumers during trying times. This is our way to recognize the critical role our frontline plays in our organization, now and always," said Kirk Tanner, chief executive officer of PepsiCo Beverages North America.
PepsiCo has also increased cleaning frequency of facilities and assets, expanded availability of gloves, and is actively encouraging practicing good hygiene, as well as stepped up visitor screening and restrictions.
Where possible, the company is decreasing routing and merchandising to minimize exposure of its employees.
Enhanced PepsiCo benefits to all US employees include:
• Employees who must quarantine will receive 100% of their pay during the up to 14-day quarantine period. The quarantine period will not reduce accrued unused sick days, nor will there be a negative impact to attendance records.
• Employees who have been assessed by a doctor and are either showing symptoms or are diagnosed with COVID-19 will receive 100% of their pay during the 14-day quarantine period. Beginning week 3, employees will receive sick pay/short-term disability benefits, which will provide a minimum of two-thirds of their pay, for up to 10 weeks.
• Employees who are caring for a family member living in the same household who has been assessed by a doctor and is either showing symptoms or has been diagnosed with COVID-19 will receive 100% of their pay during the 14-day quarantine period. Beginning week 3, if they are not able to work from home, they will receive a minimum of two-thirds of their pay for up to 10 weeks. If they are working from home, their full pay will be continued.
• Employees who work at a facility that must be closed will receive 100% pay for up to 12 weeks.
• Employees who are impacted by school or day care center closure with no one home to look after a child, will receive a minimum of two-thirds of their pay for up to 12 weeks if they are not able to work from home.
• Employees are also eligible for free COVID-19 testing, a "Crisis Care" reimbursement of $100 a day for child care, and access to specially trained mental health professionals.
Aid to communities most impacted by COVID-19
PepsiCo also announced that through its philanthropic arm, the PepsiCo Foundation, the company is investing up to $11m in food, water, and other critical support to the most vulnerable communities impacted by COVID-19 around the world.
Partnering with the USDA and the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty, PepsiCo will deliver one million food boxes to students in rural America, including a $1m commitment.
The company's Food for Good program aims to provide 200,000 meals weekly to students and distribute at least 1 million meals over the next month to impacted US communities. PepsiCo has also provided $100,000 to Feeding Westchester to help distribute shelf-stable meals and fresh produce to local residents across Westchester County, New York.