Yet, it seems that the economy may have changed the company’s plans. Research Campus founder David Murdock said: “It’s in flux.” At the end of May, a PepsiCo spokesperson said, “The company has no comment at this time.”
PepsiCo still wants to join the campus, but “we’re not sure what the nature will be,” said Murdock, the billionaire owner of Dole Food Co.
Lynne Scott Safrit, president of campus developer Castle & Cooke North Carolina, confirmed that PepsiCo still wants to partner with the campus, but said she can’t predict what role the company might have.
PepsiCo, which owns Tropicana, Quaker Foods and Gatorade, announced in October that it would open a research and development facility at the campus to find ways to make its products more nutritious.
The company was supposed to move into the Core Laboratory Building, the centrepiece of the Research Campus. Dr Mehmood Khan, chief scientific officer for PepsiCo, said the company would send its “brightest and best scientists” to the campus.
Officials speculated about collaborations between PepsiCo and universities with research programmes in Kannapolis. The Research Campus website still lists PepsiCo as one of the “companies that have committed to the campus”.
Source: The Salisbury Post
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