Professors Tony Blakely, Nick Wilson, Boyd Swinburn and Cliona Ni Mhurchu
The Government has an action plan to tackle childhood obesity, but it lacks a tax on sugary drinks – a strategy for which there is good evidence. A new Treasury Report on soft drink tax price elasticities has just emerged. It has the look of a strategically published document that if and when – during election year – certain politicians need to defend non-action on taxing sugary drinks, they can point to this Report and obfuscate. Indeed, this New Zealand Treasury Report has already been used for this purpose in Australia. We critique this Report in this blog, with a view to preventing its misrepresentation and to encourage a more informed discussion on taxing sugary drinks.
Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Cristina Cleghorn, Dr Andrea Teng, Dr Rob Beaglehole, Prof Tony Blakely
New Zealand has made some progress in removing the sale of sugary drinks from hospitals and schools. In this blog we look at such successes to date and consider what could be done to further reduce availability of these products which are both harming oral health and fuelling the obesity epidemic.
Dr Wilma Waterlander, Prof Nick Wilson, Prof Cliona Ni Mhurchu, Dr Cristina Cleghorn, Dr Andrea McDonald, Dr Helen Eyles, Prof Tony Blakely
A Conservative UK Government has announced a new soft drink tax with revenue recycling towards school-based physical activity programmes. In this blog we briefly look at the UK initiative and assess its possible utility for changing New Zealand’s obesogenic environment.
Dr Andrea McDonald, Dr Cristina Cleghorn, Prof Nick Wilson, Prof Tony Blakely
Last month the British Medical Journal published a study on the highly anticipated purchasing data examining the impact of taxing sugar sweetened beverages (SSB) in Mexico (1). This study reported that the 10% tax on SSBs was associated with an overall 12% reduction in purchases and a 4% increase in purchases of untaxed beverages one year after implementation. In this blog we examine this latest study, how it fits in with existing evidence, and how these results might apply to improving the control of obesity and improving child oral health in New Zealand.
Dr Andrea McDonald
There are many ways that taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) can be designed and implemented. These aspects can affect the likely impact on SSB consumption and health. This blog looks at a policy discussion document from the Pacific and explores some of the reasons SSB tax outcomes from Mexico appear to show positive reductions in SSB consumption.