Do you support a ‘sugar tax’ to help tackle obesity?

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We have all been made aware this year that sugar is the enemy in our diets, and the excessive consumption of sugar is playing a large part in the obesity crisis that we face in the UK, especially in children.

A sugar tax and cutting buy-one-get-one-free deals are part of Public Health England’s “key actions” to tackle people’s addiction to sugar.

It suggests:

  • A sugar tax between 10% and 20%
  • Significantly reducing advertising high sugar food and drink to children
  • Targeting supermarkets and take-away special offers
  • Sugar reduction in everyday food and drink
  • Ensure the sale of healthier foods in hospitals and other public bodies
  • Call on industry to reduce amount of added sugar

The report attacked price promotions that distort people’s shopping baskets – 40% of money spent on food and drink was on products on offer.

However, a spokesman for David Cameron said the Prime Minister did not “see the need for a tax on sugar” and that there were “more effective ways” of dealing with the obesity crisis which costs the NHS £6bn a year.

Shocking amounts of sugar revealed in drinks

Shocking amounts of sugar revealed in drinks

What are your views?  Do you have a sweet tooth? Do you think that responsibility lies with the manufacturers who add the sugar to the food in the first place.  Should we tackle the cause of the problem, rather than the symptom? Or do you think it is up to the individual to manage their sugar consumption.  Would a sugar tax deter you or change your buying habits?

Do you support a 'sugar tax' to help tackle obesity?

583 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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major red
19th Aug 2016
0
Thanks for voting!
no no one can tell me whats good or bad its my choice but i drink suger free as i cant exersise
Wilf
5th Dec 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
Yes I think there should be a sugar tax both on the producers of sugary drinks and food which will stop them making it and on the consumers. The tax should then go into a special fund to pay for parts of the NHS which treat diseases caused by sugar like diabetes.
SilverRos
7th Nov 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
I don't support a sugar tax but at the age of 68 I was diagnosed class 2 diabetic at the beginning of the summer. I have been overweight ever since I had my daughters and had a very sweet tooth. I felt very guilty seeing those denied drugs due to finance for people with cancer etc. and decided to take myself in hand. I have lost over a stone feel much better and my doctor has taken me off some of my medication. I read soon after my diagnosis of others who had acted for themselves and come right off medication so I feel much more has to be done to publisise the effects of too much sugar.
nottslass
1st Nov 2015
3
Thanks for voting!
I do support this. However, it's probably never going to come in, due to big business lobby groups. What could be done easily is to have a BIG picture of how many teaspoons of sugar is in the product on the FRONT of the item. Also, the traffic lights should be on the FRONT. BTW one way to stop young people drinking too much alcohol would be to alert them to the amount of carbohydrates/sugars in their drinks; think most young people would be concerned with not putting on too much weight rather than trying to work out ABVs!
lizfid3
29th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
A tax will not solve the problem, the problem is down to lifestyle and choices. There's a lot of cheap rubbish available in shops and people on low incomes often have no choice when it comes to ensuring their children are fed. Not everyone is a Nigella Lawson and a child with a full stomach is better than a hungry child. To add to the problem we are now being told that red meats, bacon, sausages and processed meats are causing cancer. There'll soon be nothing left which is safe for us to eat.
Munsterlander
28th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
NO its a total nonsense! What will the government do next tax fresh air?. Just get the food and drink manufacturers to clearly label how much sugar the products contain with a health warning...bit like on cigarettes. Combine that with good PR and advice and that should do the trick!
kathyL.
27th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
Would like to see how many spoons of sugar are in food would make it a lot easier than grams etc.
wpshark
27th Oct 2015
6
Thanks for voting!
I am sick and tired of being told what to eat and what to drink and how much of this etc etc. For over 30 years we were scared into believing that butter was bad for you and margarine good. Now it emerges that margarine is bad and butter good.
My choices have been removed and I am now forced to buy Orange squash that has "no sugar added". Why? If I want the good tasting product then surely my rights as a consumer should be respected.
This PC/liberal/do-good society has gone way over the top.
AnnHar1
28th Oct 2015
2
Thanks for voting!
That is ok everyone is entitled to their opinion, nevertheless, obesity does need to be tackled as it causes life threatening illness that costs the NHS far too much. My friend was unable to have a hip replacement because of her weight so she lost 6.5 stones but the damage to general health was so bad because of her poor choices that she still was unable to have the OP even after she had lost the weight. Its not about denying yourself its about eating healthily and sugar is definitely NOT a healthy option.
JohnHerb
27th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
I think that even the best scientific minds are still not sure what the best diets are. Having said that Mediterranean diets of fish, veg, fruit seems to keep people healthy and long lived
wpshark
27th Oct 2015
2
Thanks for voting!
You forget to add "copious amounts of alcohol"
EileenG
27th Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
It would be better if manufacturers reduced the amount of sugar used in their products. Many people either don't use sugar or restrict its intake for various reasons and I think a sugar tax would be unfair to them. Also, most people would be prepared to pay the increase to serve their sugar addiction.
jones2015
27th Oct 2015
3
Thanks for voting!
It,s up o the parents to say no to fuzzy drinks, sweets etc..always alternatives...
ChristineF2
27th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
I think people should know roughly how much sugar is in an item. If you divide the number of carbohydrates by five that will tell you the number of teaspoons of sugar is in this item.
JohnHerb
27th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
Yes I totally agree with you. Food/drink now has labels which are too small they should have a large label on the back saying this product contains x grams of sugar...simple but effective!
MargaretA3
27th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
We dont need a sugar tax. Only properly educated people. Why tax everyone??
jeanmark
27th Oct 2015
3
Thanks for voting!
How judgemental, why assume that people are not properly educated if they have sugar in their diet? Do you eat fruit?
jc1
30th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
I think it's all wrong putting a sugar tax on food and drink its just the government being greedy again, I grew up late forties fifties suger was in everything i didn't come to any harm because I was educated in moderation.
JohnHerb
27th Oct 2015
1
Thanks for voting!
We all eat sugar and even if you are well educated you are eating it everyday....drinks, alcohol, fruit, cakes, sweets etc etc
houn66
27th Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
We were lucky to have been born just after WW2 when sweets were still on ration and sugar was in short supply. I people want to drink sugary drinks a small tax will make no difference. We need to educate people about the effects sugar etc has on the body. Moderation in everything.
marypbartlett
27th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
Yes I think a sugar tax on all soft drinks, still, fizzy and cordials would be a good thing but if people want them they will pay and the only ones to benefit will be our greedy government!
cosworth62
25th Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
Just another example of being forced to not have life choices it is all wrong
jc1
25th Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
Just another tax surely it must be up to the parents to see that their children don't have to much.
arorass898
25th Oct 2015
2
Thanks for voting!
I think it's upto the individual to decide how much sugar they would like.
Mrsmollywobbles
24th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
I agree the manufacturers should be held to account for the amount they add to their products, having said that it's clear people don't take responsibility for themselves.
daydreams
23rd Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
It won't make any difference to a lot of people I don't think. It should be that pressure is put on manufacturers at source, to reduce the amount of sugar, and more education is needed - for children and adults - about added sugars. Once you start letting children have sugary drinks etc., it must be very hard to get them to stop and you can't control them all the time, like when they are at school for example.
MaxLenny
23rd Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
Why not? If it can raise some money and awareness is it such a bad thing?
jeanmark
26th Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
I find it difficult to believe that additional taxing is the answer to resolving all problems relating to obesity! It will raise money for the government but will it raise health awareness to those with the problem - people still smoke, drink alcohol etc and these are all highly taxed.
thefilthycripple
23rd Oct 2015
3
Thanks for voting!
A sugar tax is yet more Nanny state ,sugar should be restricted by statute . But no Government is brave enough to take on Coca Cola (as per Tesco ) .Always remember there are vast amounts of sugar in alcohol !
gasue
23rd Oct 2015
2
Thanks for voting!
More importantly I think the food manufacturers need to be taxed on the amount of sugar they include in their products. Having recently been diagnosed diabetic, I am astonished at the amount of sugar not just in cakes, etc but in milk, bread, juices, etc etc. I did say yes on this survey but I really believe the manufacturers should rectify this at source.
Jo Kingham
23rd Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
I'm not sure that putting a tax on will stop people buying them - it doesn't with booze, however something has to be done. It's not cancer, heart disease or any other major illness that will bankrupt the NHS it is obesity so we have to tackle it somehow. Sugar is as addictive as some major drugs and is in so much food which it doesn't need to be e.g. bread, baked beans, soup. The manufacturers should be put under pressure to stop adding it to foods across the board (and not replacing it with things like aspartame), not just focus on confectionary and fizzy pop.
shabbychic
22nd Oct 2015
5
Thanks for voting!
I think the sugar content should be more prominent, however nutrition should be taught in schools. By that I mean basic cooking skills - soup, stews, how to cook meat properly and how to identify the different cuts. Education. Where does the food come from and how to use it.
jeanmark
26th Oct 2015
3
Thanks for voting!
I'm not sure teaching basic cooking skills will reduce obesity but education may.
JohnHerb
22nd Oct 2015
4
Thanks for voting!
This all sounds a bit daft to me. The only product that seems to be really regulated are Cigarettes. Maybe Sugar needs to be regulated by the manufacturers of soft drinks etc being pushed to add less sugar. This issue is they will probably add sweeteners and they could be more dangerous. Look at the way we were all supposed to eat margarine instead of butter in the 70s and 80s. Now the "authorities" are saying eat butter? I do think less sugar needs to added though in biscuits etc. We would soon get used to a new taste. I do not think new taxes should be added. Food is expensive enough already why on earth should the customer pay more?
Marley444
22nd Oct 2015
6
Thanks for voting!
My view is that the manufacturers of all the sugary drinks and sweets should be the ones to change what they produce and how they label it. I think the law should be changed, so that the number of teaspoons of sugar should be clearly stated on the outside of all products. This could be easily interpreted by children, and the teaching of the harm that sugar causes should be taught in schools from a very young age too. Forget tax!! It is awareness and education that is needed.

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