UK Sugar Tax 2018 – Boon or Bane?
What is the UK Sugar Tax 2018?
In an attempt to curb the alarming rise in cases of obesity and Type 2 Diabetes, the former chancellor George Osborne had made an announcement of sugar tax in the year 2016. He felt that imposing a tax on sweet soft drinks is a constructive method to bring down the sugar consumption of the citizens of UK. The sugar tax has become effective finally this year from the 6th of April, 2018.
The tax is meant for products like Coca-Cola, Red Bull or Fanta that prepare soft drinks containing a quantity of more than 5g sugar per 100ml. If the sugar content falls in between 5gm to 8gm per 100 ml the taxes charged will be less as compared to the sugar content more than 8gm per 100 ml as the rate of tax will be around 24p per litre for the latter category. The sugar tax can raise a roughly estimated amount of £520 million annually that can be spent on sports funds for primary schools.
Ideally, the taxes should be borne by the soft drink companies which seem highly unlikely. Hence, a surge in the prices of these soft drinks can be expected.
So, is it a boon or bane?
In countries like Mexico and Hungary, sugar tax has come up with promising results as there was a definite reduction in the incidence of cases of obesity and diabetes. Hence, the sugar tax has certainly come as a boon for many. Unfortunately, individuals with a sweet tooth have expressed their resentment through Twitter and various other social media platforms calling it a bane. They feel that they need to pay a higher price for something which they have been feeding on for years together.
Sugar Impact on Dental Health
The sugar tax is bound to have a significant impact on the reduction of the incidence of dental decay as well. Refined fermentable carbohydrates or sugars (as they are called generally) are one of the most important causative factors for dental decay. Fizzy drinks like Coca-Cola are a dangerous concoction of heavy loads of sugar and carbonic acid (that adds the fizz to these popular beverages). Sugars attract the decay-causing bacteria as these microorganisms derive their nourishment from the sugar particles. In this process, they release acid as a by-product. The acid reduces the pH inside the mouth producing cavities. The acid from these fizzy drinks adds fuel to the fire by further lowering the pH and eroding the enamel. What could be deadlier than this!
Why increased sugar tax would benefit your teeth?
With the implementation of sugar taxes, the consumers will be bound to think twice before they pick a bottle of soft drink for themselves. A similar effect is expected from the manufacturing companies. They will be under compulsion to reduce the sugar content and keep it at a level below 5gm per 100 ml. This is the only sure-shot way available to evade the Sugar Tax.
Even though the Sugar Tax may not sound that sweet, we hope it definitely brings forth positive results by diminishing the rates of various medical ailments like childhood obesity, diabetes and dental decay.
Also read – Early Childhood Tooth Decay