Soft drink industry’s plan won’t work

3 Jul 2018

The AMA has called on the major political parties to get serious in the war on obesity by making a sugar tax a priority in their health policies for the next Federal election.

The soft drink industry last week announced a plan to reduce its sugar use by 20 per cent by 2025, in a move backed by Health Minister, Greg Hunt.

However, the commitment will be an average across the industry’s portfolio, meaning a company could reduce its use of sugar simply by producing more bottled water.

“The soft drink industry’s commitment to cut sugar content is too little over too long a period, and there is no guarantee of less sugar in the most popular sugar sweetened beverages (SSBs),” AMA President, Dr Tony Bartone, said.

“One of the best ways to achieve a change in consumer behaviour is with a sugar tax. The evidence is in. Price signals work.

“We have seen success with excise increases on tobacco products. And we are seeing early successes with sugar taxes in Mexico and some American States.

“The sugar tax makes sense. The AMA will campaign for it up to election day, and beyond if needed.”

Read AMA media.