Research Claims Current Taxation Does Little To Reduce Obesity

Research indicates current levels of taxation on soft drinks have had a relatively small impact on people's weight and, in turn, their Body Mass Index (BMI), according to researchers who examined the impact of taxing sweetened beverages to reduce obesity.

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Editor's Insight: This is a very thorough analysis of the impact of taxes on consumer beverages choices. It notes that facing a higher tax-induced price, consumers would adjust their choices among alternative beverages, such as diet drinks, bottled water, juice or milk.

The researchers note that using taxes or other disincentives to influence consumption is a complicated undertaking with many unknowns. The ultimate outcome would depend on many factors, including the size of the tax, the type of tax and the competitive strategies of beverage manufacturers and food retailers.

There is a lot to take into consideration when considering a tax to affect consumption. A lot more than many politicians and activists are aware of when they propose these taxes. 02-07-11 Elliot Maras

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