This morning we came across an editorial in the Chicago Sun-Times about the City of Chicago's Health & Environment Committee hearing earlier this week on the effects and implication of placing a 15 to 35 cent tax on sugar-sweetened beverages. The editorials’ message is spot-on: “Chicago and the nation can do better than a pop tax.”
We agree. Beverage taxes are discriminatory, regressive and, importantly, will not solve the complex issue of obesity that some in the public health community allege they will. As the editorial explains:
“That’s a nanny-state solution, one that says government must protect us from ourselves, one that doesn’t harness the power of everyday Americans to solve this problem for themselves.”
In today’s marketplace, our industry offers an ever-increasing number of low- and no-calorie choices. From 1998 to 2010, the average calories per serving decreased by 23 percent. And with the Clear on Calories initiative, we’re placing calorie information right on the front of every bottle, can and pack we produce to help consumers make the choice that’s best for themselves and their families. These are meaningful solutions that we hope the Chicago-Sun Times would agree will have a lasting impact.