Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne unveiled a new tax on sugary drinks at the House of Commons on Wednesday, with the aim of cutting down on increasing childhood obesity levels.
The tax, which is to be imposed on excessive sugar levels in soft drinks, starts in two years’ time.
Drinks with more than five grams of sugar per 100 milliliters will be taxed, Osborne said. Sugary drinks serve as “one of the biggest contributors to childhood obesity,” the chancellor stated.
“I can announce that we will introduce a new sugar levy on the soft drinks industry,” Osborne said, adding that the delay in implementation of the new measure was meant to “give companies plenty of time to change their product mix.”
Soft drink producers saw a plunge in their shares after the announcement. Health experts have welcomed the decision. However, some warned that manufacturers may opt to increase the price of their products rather than getting along with…