A 20p “sugar tax” on sugary canned drinks would save thousands of children from diabetes, heart disease and cancer late in life, experts claim.
This campaign was proposed by the Children’s Food Campaign (CFC) after they published research investigating how a UK government tax on sugary drinks could impact London.
The results, calculated by academics from the University of Liverpool showed a 20p levy would reduce the number of people in London who develop diabetes by 6,300.
A 20p tax was also found to prevent 1,100 cases of cancer in the capital, with 4,300 people cut from those suffering from coronary heart disease or strokes.
Tackling the sugar source
Malcolm Clark, campaign co-ordinator of the CFC, explained: “A duty on sugary drinks of 20 pence per litre would be the most practical and effective way of tackling a significant source of unnecessary calories and sugar in children and young people’s diets.”
The British Dietetic Associatio, Academy of Medical Royal Colleges and Faculty of Public Health are just three of more than 60 organisations that have already backed the campaign.
A tax of 20p a litre would add roughly seven pence to a Coca-Cola or Pepsi can, with soft drinks currently the largest single sugar source for children aged between four to ten and teenagers.
France, Hungary and Mexico have implemented similar taxes on sugary drinks, with consumption in Mexico reduced considerably after a year of the tax being introduced.
Clark concluded: “We urge London’s mayor and council leaders to include a sugary drinks duty in their review of how London might manage devolved taxation powers, and to make the case to Westminster for the introduction of such a duty nationally.”
The Children’s Food Campaign plans to launch figures for the impact of a sugary drinks duty on the rest of England in early 2015.

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