The response from Oceana comes a week after PepsiCo pledged to increase the use of reusable packaging in its beverage products.
By 2030, the company plans to serve 20% of its beverages through reusable models.
PepsiCo said the increase in its reusable packaging would be made possible by its reuse platform, SodaStream, as well as its refillable bottling operations in Mexico, Guatemala, Chile, Colombia, Germany and the Philippines.
Oceana is asking the company to quantify how the sale of additional SodaStream machines, powders and concentrates would reduce its single-use plastic footprint.
Oceana senior vice-president Matt Littlejohn said: “PepsiCo needs to detail its planned increase for reusable packaging for each business, particularly in countries where the company and its bottlers already sell refillable bottles.
“If the additional powders and concentrates sold are packaged in plastic sachets or other types of plastic that are difficult to recycle, it could mean replacing one plastic pollution problem with another.
“Unfortunately, there is reason to be skeptical. PepsiCo is — according to its own data — increasing its use of plastic and is not on track to meet its plastic reduction promises.”
A report published last month by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation found that PepsiCo used 5.5 billion pounds of plastic packaging last year, which was 331 million pounds more than it used in 2020.
Despite pledging to halve the amount of virgin plastic in each of its products by 2030, the company was also found to use 5% more virgin plastic packaging last year than a year earlier.
Last month, a study by Oceana found that beverage company Coca-Cola increased its use of plastic packaging by 8.8% in one year.