For quite some time, we at Sip & Savor have shared our viewpoint on soda taxes, why they are nothing more than a money grab and, importantly, why they just won't solve the complex challenge of obesity in our country. We've also shared science and data that support our position. Today we'd like to share yet another study from some economists at Emory University who recently had a paper published in the Journal of Public Economics. And what did they find?
Dr. David Frisvold and his co-workers at Emory found that "the evidence to date is that soft drink taxes are ineffective as an ‘obesity tax'."
To reach their findings, the authors looked at state soft drink sales and excise tax information from 1989 to 2006, and then correlated that information with data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. (Commonly referred to as NHANES, this is a program of government studies used to assess the health and nutritional status of the American population.)
What we do know for sure is that taxes don’t make people healthier - balanced diets and exercise do that. And what we also know is that the American public simply does not want more taxes - especially on items in their grocery carts.
If we want to solve the obesity challenge, it will take all of us working together on comprehensive solutions. The beverage industry is proud to be doing its part with its national School Beverage Guidelines and Clear on Calories initiatives, as well as through ongoing product innovation.