Soft Drinks: Taxation

HM Treasury written question – answered on 26th May 2016.

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Photo of Richard Fuller Richard Fuller Conservative, Bedford

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what data or research by industry analysts were used to inform the decision to introduce a soft drinks industry levy.

Photo of Damian Hinds Damian Hinds The Exchequer Secretary

Health experts have identified sugar sweetened soft drinks as a major source of sugar in children’s and teenagers’ diet, and a cause of childhood obesity. The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) recommends that sugar only forms 5% of daily calories; however, for children, it is currently around 15%.

The most recent published National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) reports that sugar sweetened soft drinks are the a major contributor to daily sugar intake for children, accounting for about 30% of the daily sugar intake alone.

The soft drinks industry levy will encourage producers to reformulate soft drinks so that they contain less sugar.

Industry data was used for the policy costing of the soft drinks industry levy announced at Budget 2016. Details are available at page 12 in the Budget 2016 policy costings document available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/508147/PU1912_Policy_Costings_FINAL3.pdf

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