Sugar tax backed by MPs

MP’s have agreed a tax on sugary drinks should be introduced as a measure to tackle child obesity in England. 

The Commons’ Health Committee has conducted a report entitled ‘child obesity - a brave and bold action’, which says there is now ‘compelling evidence’ that a tax would reduce consumption. 

The report criticises ministers who have so far resisted the tax insisting calls for a tax ‘could no lover be ignored’, and proposes a crackdown on marketing and advertising.

In addition to some ministers, food industry representatives claim a new tax would be unfair on consumers. The government will be publishing its plans early next year, along with its child obesity strategy, however, it has admitted a tax would be an unfavourable result. 

The report calibrated evidence from Mexico, where a ten per cent tax on sugar-sweetened drinks saw a six per cent reduction in consumption. It also urged government to use the strategy to take control of the obesity crisis by outlining the fact that a fifth of children start primary school overweight or obese, rising to a third by the time the leave. 

In addition to tax, the report called for: a crack down on price promotions of unhealthy foods; tougher controls on marketing, including the use of cartoon characters to promote unhealthy food; a ban on advertising unhealthy foods on television before 21:00; clear labelling of products showing sugar content in teaspoons; and a drive to force industry to reduce sugar in food and drink, as has happened with salt. 

Event Diary

You are invited to this unique annual exhibition that brings together all the disciplines from the emergency services sector who are involved in prevention, response and recovery. 

Europe's leading showcase of technology supported workplace learning