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Fizzy drinks tax moves closer

By Editor
7th December 2016
Latest news

Campaigners say moves to bring in a central tax on sugary drinks will “help protect our children’s future health”.

The results of a Government consultation on introducing in the levy from April 2018 were published this week, with details of the rate to be revealed as part of next year’s Government budget.

Excessive sugar consumption is one of the factors that contributes to obesity levels particularly in youngsters

Respondents included medical and health groups as well as manufacturers, with more than a half of the 154 responses in favour a levy.

Jane Ellison, financial secretary to the Treasury, said: “The Government has always been clear that this is a levy we would rather not collect – but one which is necessary to help drive down sugar consumption and tackle childhood obesity.”

The Obesity Health Alliance is a coalition of over 30 organisations, including Diabetes UK, which have joined together to fight obesity.

A spokesman for the alliance said: “We’re pleased to see the government move forward with the Soft Drinks Industry Levy which is a necessary measure to help decrease our sugar intake, and reduce the burden of obesity and its devastating health complications.

‘Tackling obesity today will save money tomorrow’

“Sugary soft drinks are currently the largest source of sugar for children, and this high sugar intake is driving the deadly obesity epidemic which costs our health service billions of pounds every year. Tackling obesity today will save money tomorrow.

“We support the Soft Drinks Industry Levy to help protect our children’s future health, and make healthier choices easier for everyone.”

Professor Kamlesh Khunti, co-director of the Leicester Diabetes Centre, said: “The number of people with type 2 diabetes is going up dramatically, so we would support any opportunity to help reduce sugar consumption.”

“Excessive sugar consumption is one of the factors that contributes to obesity levels particularly in youngsters.

“Type 2 diabetes is a serious condition linked to lifestyle and obesity, which if not managed properly, can lead to devastating complications, including blindness, amputation, stroke and heart disease.”

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