Lifestyle Economics

A sugar tax would hit the poor the hardest


Labour Market
Lifestyle Economics

New IEA research dispels the myth that government intervention in the sugar industry is justified

Calls to introduce a 20% tax on sugar are misguided

Commenting on the BMA calling for the introduction of a 20% tax on sugar, Chris Snowdon, Director of Lifestyle Economics at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“A 20 per cent tax on sugary drinks will cost taxpayers a billion pounds a year and will have less effect on a person’s health than walking up a flight of stairs once a day. These kind of taxes are incredibly inefficient and are particularly damaging to people on low incomes. A tax on fizzy drinks won’t make the poor any healthier, but it will certainly help to ensure they stay poor.”

“Health campaigners should stop targeting one particular ingredient and instead focus their energies on what matters – giving us the best available information about what constitutes a balanced diet and leaving individuals to make their own choice when it comes to what food to eat.”

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