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News Link • Food

20% 'Fat Tax' Needed to Fight Obesity

•,Christopher Wanjek
Yet such a tax — spread across the food chain from manufacturer to consumer, coupled with changes in food policy to spur production of healthier food — is needed to reverse the pandemic of obesity and chronic diseases, researchers say.
Two articles published online today (May 15) in the British Medical Journal describe this course of action. These opinion pieces come one week before the 65th World Health Assembly, to convene on May 21 to 26 in Geneva, where diet-related diseases will be the primary topic.
One article, led by Oliver Mytton of Oxford University's Department of Public Health, looked at tax schemes worldwide to see what has worked, however marginally. Many countries are now using such "sin" taxes, which have curbed tobacco and alcohol use, to limit the consumption of unhealthy food, Mytton said. These taxes are based on the basic economic theory that, as the price of an item rises, the consumption of that item will fall.
But this theory isn't necessarily true with food, Mytton said. Just because the price of microwave-ready, deep-fried, gooey cheese sticks goes up doesn't mean the nation will switch to kale. People might continue eating deep-fried, gooey cheese sticks, because that's what they like to eat and that's all they know how to eat.

2 Comments in Response to

Comment by Steve B.
Entered on:

How about a GMO labels on foods. Dear government slave master, we don't need to wait 30 years to learn that GMO is harmful. It's not like we didn't know long ago that junk food was not good for humans. And GMO is certainly JUNK!

Comment by Doug Nusbaum
Entered on:

Lets see... the govmint subsidized large farms and agribusiness to grow crap like sugar and corn, then taxes us because those foods make us fat. That makes sense

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