This week saw the introduction of the Sugar Tax – a levy on sugary drinks. To many, this is a ‘sin tax’, designed to deter unhealthy habits – with win/win outcomes for health and the economy.
The Sugar Tax has been talked about for almost two years now as a sensible and proactive way of tackling childhood obesity. The Sugar Tax is not a tax on all sugars, but a tax on soft drink companies in relation to the amount of sugar that they put into their drinks.
Companies will have to align with new regulations in order to comply with the tax or alter their formula, which some companies such as Ribena and Irn-Bru have already done. Meanwhile, Coca-Cola has even released new flavours of their caffeine-free, Diet and Zero ranges.
What Does the Sugar Tax Mean For You?
The Sugar Tax should not actually affect you directly. As stated by the government, “The government is not increasing the price of products; companies do not have to pass the charge on to their customers. If companies take the right steps to make their drinks healthier they will pay less tax or even nothing at all”. All that Sugar Tax will affect is an improvement in the health and economy of the country. After all, the NHS already spends £6 billion on inactivity and obesity-related health every year.
Why Do Tagtiv8 Agree With the Sugar Tax?
When we researched Kellogg’s Tony The Tiger (perhaps a distant, unhealthy relative of Tagi), we found some interesting and worrying things out about sugary breakfast cereals. We have found similar facts while looking further into the Sugar Tax.
Cancer Research found that children between ages 11-18 are drinking a bathtub of sugary drinks a year, while 4-10-year-olds are drinking half a bathtub of sugary drinks. When this amount of sugar is combined with sugary snacks and sugars found in a regular diet, we are talking about dangerously high amounts of sugar intake.
Their study also claimed that a 20p per litre sugar tax could prevent 3.7 million cases of obesity over the next decade.
Tagtiv8’s Thoughts on Sugar Tax
Tagtiv8 are fully behind finding innovative ways to help reduce childhood obesity. We are pleased that money raised by the tax will go into education via the Primary PE and Sports Premium.
The Sugar Tax may have caused a little controversy over the charge to consumers and how it affects them. However, it’s important to remember that we’re all working together to improve children’s lives – now and in the future. Obesity is a major problem in the UK. According to the Government, the UK has one of the highest obesity rates among developed countries, and it’s getting worse. Unless the health trajectory is reversed, by 2050 over 35% of boys and 20% of girls aged 6-10 are expected to be obese. As we have said, the estimated costs to the NHS is over £6 billion. Surely, this indicates that we need to change now before it’s too late.
By combining a better diet, more physical activity and constantly educating ourselves, we can tackle obesity. The Sugar Tax is a jump in the right direction, but will only impact if schools spend their Primary PE and Sports Premium wisely. There are many companies claiming that their coaches will be the solution to all the problems. However, school leaders need time to look at the research and ask themselves, “What will really make my children (and staff) fitter, healthier and ready to learn?”
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