Soda Taxes: Momentum Across the Pond

As a public health proposal, the “sugar tax” or “soda tax” continues to build traction from developments abroad despite setbacks across the country. In the year since the New York Supreme Court struck down the City’s high-profile attempt at a 16-ounce soda ban, advocates from Philadelphia to San Francisco have taken up the fight without success in the face of consumer and industry opposition.  At the same time, Mexico enacted a per-liter tax that took effect in 2014 (since modified based on sugar content) lauded by American observers. Developments in Britain could be more influential; a House of Commons Health Committee endorsed a sugar tax this week ahead of a forthcoming Whitehall obesity strategy, and today the Financial Times endorsed the “compelling” idea—as well as restrictions on soft drink advertising. 

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