US: New York proposes soft drinks fat tax
New York's governor has proposed a tax on regular soft drinks in order to reduce obesity across the state.
Soft drinks such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi would be hit by an 18% sales tax under the proposal, announced by New York state governor David Paterson in his budget speech yesterday (16 December).
The tax would apply to "certain high caloric, low nutritional beverages like non-dietetic soft drinks and sodas", according to the budget document also released yesterday.
New York Health Department figures show that nearly one in four of young people under the age of 18 are obese.
"Significant price increases should discourage individuals, especially children and teenagers, from consumption and help fight obesity which results in higher risk for diabetes and heart disease," the budget report said. This could save the health service US$539m annually by 2010-11, it claimed.
Soft drinks firms unsurprisingly rejected the planned tax.
Some of the 160,000 jobs "supported" by the beverage industry in New York would be put at risk if the tax is implemented, said the American Beverage Association.
It called the proposal "a regressive tax that will hurt most those least able to pay". It added: "If we want to be serious about battling obesity, we need to comprehensively address the consumption of all foods and beverages in moderation and get more active as a society"
The soft drinks industry is already under pressure from a weakening economy across North America, with PepsiCo and Coca-Cola both reporting slowdowns on their home market.
The UK Office of Fair Trading has shrugged off competition concerns to approve Coca-Cola Co's acquisition of a stake in smoothie maker Innocent Drinks....
Wind turbines, recycled plastics and more environmentally friendly refrigerators are some of the initiatives that have been highlighted by the British Soft Drinks Association (BSDA) to demonstrate the...
The threat of a federal tax hike on alcohol and sugary soft drinks to help pay for healthcare reform in the US appears to have receded, following comments from leading Senators in the debate....
The UK soft drinks industry has proved itself more resilient to recession than other beverage sectors in 2009, according to Paul Moody, president of the British Soft Drinks Association....
PepsiCo is to launch two limited edition line extensions to its Mountain Dew range, in association with Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft multiplayer game....
Pepsi Bottling Group has acquired Texas-based soft drinks bottler Ab-Tex Beverage, its third bottler in less than two months....
The top ten stories published on just-drinks this week:...
International Dairy and Juice Limited (IDJ), PepsiCo's venture with Saudi-based dairy company Almarai, has bought a 75% stake in Jordanian dairy producer Teeba....
- Is Diageo on the Brink of a Brain Drain?
- SABMiller edges Diageo as beer trumps spirits
- Comment - Heineken's move for Pivovarna Lasko
- Will Keurig Kold come to Coca-Cola Co's Rescue?
- Focus - SABMiller's FY Sales Performance by Region
- Rémy Cointreau eyes recovery after Q4 bounceback
- Carlsberg exec joins Diageo as Africa chief steps
- Bacardi cuts jobs at Global Brands unit
- Diageo targets Millennials with DeLeon ads
- Belvedere unveils executive team