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Jul 31, 2018 / Richard Hall

Shortcomings of sugar taxes

Two revealing reports on obesity have just been published in Britain.

One is from the much respected, independent Institute of Economic Affairs under the provocative title “Of Course Sin Taxes Are Regressive.”

It doesn’t pull its punches and concludes, as I have already perhaps too often opined myself:

• ‘Taxes on sugary drinks have never been shown to reduce overall calorie intake or obesity in any of the places they have been tried.’

• ‘The impact on overall calorie consumption is usually trivial and trends to be weaker among low income groups.’

• ‘Sugar taxes cost low income households up to 10 times as much as they cost high income groups (as a share of income).’

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