BEVERAGE INDUSTRY REJECTS CALLS FOR A SUGAR TAX

Australian Beverages Council CEO, Geoff Parker, today rejected calls from the Committee of Presidents of Medical Colleges for the introduction of a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages.

“It’s disappointing that the Committee of Presidents of Medical Colleges have called for a discriminatory tax that evidence clearly shows will not improve public health whatsoever,” Mr. Parker said.

The McKinsey Global Institute, for instance, classifies taxation as one of the least effective obesity interventions, with ‘No direct evidence for change in weight or change in consumption or physical activity levels.’[1]

In fact, trends in consumption in Australia show that the change a new tax seeks to effect is already happening.

Recent Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data indicates a decline in added sugar intake over time, yet obesity rates continue to climb.[2]

“Obesity is a serious and complex public issue with no single cause or quick-fix solution,” Mr Parker said.

“A new tax is not the way to make our nation healthier.”

 

[1] McKinsey Global Institute, Overcoming obesity: An initial economic analysis, November 2014.

[2] Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian Health Survey: Consumption of Added Sugars, April 2016.

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