American Beverage Association

January 11, 2012

Repeating Like a Broken Record

Earlier this week some researchers published a paper calling for a national penny-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened beverages to “cut health and cost burdens of diabetes.”  Why?  We’re not really sure since a beverage tax will have no impact on public health.

In fact, the authors admittedly used assumptions based on ‘lacking or inconclusive’ evidence.  Even so, they estimate their proposed tax would result in an average weight loss of less than one pound per year.  For those trying to lose weight, clearly this would be a discouraging, never mind ineffective, approach. Yet the authors allege that their proposal would save 26,000 lives – over a 10-year period.

Let’s be clear:  this is yet another attempt by researchers and their supporters who have long advocated discriminatory taxes on beverages to promote a beverage tax. … nothing more, nothing less.

You can read our response to the paper here, but we thought we’d point out a couple of key points:

  • As we’ve noted before, taxes won’t make people healthier, diet and exercise do.
  • There is nothing unique about our products and their ingredients when it comes to obesity, or obesity-related diseases such as diabetes or coronary disease.
  • Consumers simply don’t support these taxes.  In fact, they recognize them for what they truly are – a money grab to raise revenue to fund more government.


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