New Delhi: Food and beverage maker PepsiCo India will invest 514 crore over three years to set up a greenfield snacks manufacturing plant in Uttar Pradesh (UP), Ahmed ElSheikh, president and CEO, PepsiCo India, said on Sunday.

The investment is in line with the company's plan to double its snacking business that includes brands such as Kurkure and Lays in India by 2022.

The company's senior leadership team signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with representatives of the UP government at the state's second groundbreaking event that is aimed at attracting investments in several projects.

"PepsiCo is committed to growing its food and beverage business sustainably in India. We have a long relationship with the people of Uttar Pradesh. As we look to double our snacks business over the next few years, we intend to invest Rs.514 crores approx. to expand our footprint in Uttar Pradesh," ElSheikh said in a statement.

"Agriculture is at the heart of PepsiCo and our farmer friends are the backbone of our business. As we expand our operations, we will look forward to a fruitful association that will not only help create jobs and enable ancillary industries, but also ensure the socio-economic progress of potato farmers in the state," he added.

The plant will create 1,500 direct and indirect jobs.

PepsiCo, which sells Tropicana, 7Up, Mountain Dew and Kurkure, has been looking to grow its business beyond sugary drinks to address shifting consumer needs. As a result, it has been lining up new flavours and region-specific variants in its popular Lays and Kurkure brand of salty snacks. It also helps that India's packaged snacks and foods market is expected to grow 22.3% between 2018 and 2022, according to estimates by research firm Euromonitor.

In India, PepsiCo competes with companies such as Prataap Snacks, Haldiram's, and ITC among others.

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