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Could placing a tax on sugared beverages help fight obesity?

American children currently drink more sweetened beverages than they do milk. This is partly due to economics. Soda is cheaper and more widely available than milk. So some experts are suggesting a way to level the playing field - place a large tax on sugared beverages. High taxes on cigarettes have helped curb smoking rates, and now states such as Maine and New York are considering a similar move to reduce soda consumption. Studies consistently show that people who drink sweetened beverages tend to weigh more, consume more calories, and have a higher risk for diabetes. Taxing soda and similar drinks by 10 percent could cut consumption by 10 percent. Education alone is not working. The only way to get people to stop drinking so many of their calories is to hit them in their pocketbooks, the policy experts say. But the companies are fighting back with economics as well. Pepsico is considering moving their headquarters out of New York State if the proposed sugared beverage tax goes forward.

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missing soft drinks

6 months without a coke = 25# weight loss no other changes in eating habits

tax tax tax

If parents give their kids soda because its cheaper than milk how about figuring out how to lower the price of milk, juice and other "healthy" beverages? O' wait that would take some multi-billion dollar investigation, never mind. Candy will be next, cakes/pies, chips, caffeinated items.

There are plenty of sugar

There are plenty of sugar free powdered juice mixes. Walmart sells tons of flavors for $1.76 a canister, and it makes 12 quarts. Getting kids off soda means having the parents realize how fattening it is as well...water is free, despite how "nasty" some people say it is. Plus, it is only a proposed 3 CENTS per 12 oz. It doesn't matter though, when people need their fix of whatever, they will pay the price. The cost of cigarettes went up A LOT & that hasn't stopped people.


ANYTHING in moderation is OK...ANYTHING EXCESSIVE ... IS BAD...I can eat 50 fruit smoothies a day and that is JUST as bad as 50 sodas. Why should we let the government DICTATE to us and PUNISH us for decisions WE make when it comes to what we eat. If you are overweight and don't care...WHY should the government care? Don't say it cost US money....if that is the case...then we need to SCREEN every single individual in this country and base insurance on DNA markers pointing to what you most probably will be afflicted with throughout your life.....HOW DOES THAT SOUND?

They know that just with

They know that just with people continuing to smoke, then people would continue to drink sodas. What is this, prohibition again? Maybe we can set up little backyard stills and sell bootleg soda? They want to increase the tax on something for the revenue it would generate. They use something "unhealthy" to gain the support of the medical and fitness segments of the society. As far as taking soda machines out of the school system, the students will simply buy their own and bring them to school. There are indications that some of the recent ideas of the government go past socialism on the way to that other "ism".


Pepsico can move to NC and give us jobs!


While we are at it lets tax the rich cause they are rich and lets tax the poor because they are poor. Lets set up road blocks and make people pay as they drive. Oh wait forget that, they have Troopers do that when you speed 5 over the limit. When will it end? Before we had the Police, you could protest (Boston Tea Party). Try it now and you are in jail. If they did it right, 15% of what you make should be taxes,PERIOD! That way everybody pays equally. Businesses should pay 30%. Eventually it will be like that. No waiting till April 15th. Just pay right out of your paycheck. Pretty soon you'll being paying to breath. When will it end? Over taxation!!


it's like 14 MPH over the speed limit before a Trooper will flick his lights on...Ill drive 9 over all day up and down I-40 past any Trooper I see... HOWEVER, i agree with the rest of what you have to say...WE THE PEOPLE should stand up and say...FIFTEEN PERCENT...PERIOD thats all you get...spend it WISELY! NOW...I think we get SCREWED in NC anyway...we pay taxes on what we make...then the State rolls around and TAXES US AGAIN...for goods...taxing the SAME MONEY TWICE! pay SEVEN taxes to drive your vehicle.. 1. Tag 2. Inspection 3. Drivers License 4. County TAX 5. STATE Gas Tax 6. Federal Gas Tax 7. Taxes paid when BUYING your vehicle to begin with. Even without the gas taxes you pay FIVE.. If the State of NC could figure out how to put a camera in my bedroom...they would charge me a SEX TAX...IM TIRED OF TAXES!

you're right

right on the mark. And what does it cost to staff the departments to collect those taxes? What does it cost businesses in man hours to account for those taxes? What does it cost to run the DMV? The drivers license office? Even better than a flat tax is a consumption tax. That's the way it's done in Europe. That way all of our illegal immigrants and under-the-table untaxed workers would pay on what they buy. No more hiding tips, pocketing drug money, paying lower wages to immigrants (taking jobs from citizens), or tax shelters. You can save all your money all year long, but when you buy that Lexus with the bling rims, you will pay your fair share. Consumption tax is easily adjusted for deficits, fairly shared burden by all. Right now I wonder how much it costs for the Federal government to account and adjust all of these different taxes for yearly budgets.

Isn't it funny...

That they never suggest lowering the prices of healthy or friendly alternatives? How about dropping the taxes, and mandating a ceiling price on all the healthy or environmentally friendly goods? Oh, that's right, because the same people producing these goods for sale are the same ones crying for higher taxes on their competitors. Since the healthy/friendly products seldom taste anywhere near as good, or the "green" products rarely work as well as the products they replace it becomes necessary to force the "stupid consumer" to consume the alternative healthy/friendly goods. This just proves that politicians use taxes as a punitive measure. If the USDA would stop paying dairies to pour out perfectly good milk to help keep prices high, than perhaps cheese and milk products would cost less than the sweet alternatives. Just when is the public going to finally get fed up with falling for the sales pitches being spoon fed to them by candidates, while being stabbed in the wallet immediately following the election? Your state and federal governments make nothing, produce nothing, and anything they offer to you is taken from everyone, not just some hypothetical Bill Gates type that is vilified to create class warfare.

Very good point. Why not

Very good point. Why not reduce the costs of healthy foods? That would be more effective in weight control than raising the taxes on sodas. It is all about money, not our health. They just mention the obesity issue to try to justify robbing our wallets. They are not concerned about our health, they're just trying to come up with any way possible to tax us more. It's the same with cigarettes, they say they want people to quit smoking; but if people do then they won't get all that extra tax money. They know that most smokers will continue to smoke anyway. It's all about getting every penny they can from our pockets.

Why Are We Fat?

As a 50 year - old personal trainer who works full time as a firefighter it is a constant battle for me to fight against being overweight. My age and my life habits can either make me or break me. I can do nothing about my age but I can control my eating habits. We are looking for ways to cut out obesity in our children and society as a whole. With the advent of TV decades ago, video gaming systems, computers and the internet we keep getting lazier and lazier, fatter and fatter. Go to Hoggard High School and you cannot find one single diet drink in any of the soda machines. While it may help bring in revenue at the school, soda machines in schools are bringing our children closer to health problems associated with too much sugar and caloric intake. We need to eliminate soda machines in schools, set up mandatory physical fitness programs in every grade level, even in high school. My daughter was credited for being a "floor runner" in one of her classes last semester. She received physical fitness credit for doing so. I am sorry but walking the floors with an occasional note for a student will not bring you much on a cardiovascular level. We don't need a tax on sodas. It worked with only limited success for smokers and it is highly doubtful it will work for soda drinkers. Maybe reeducation will work when it comes to nutrition as well as the aforementioned requirements for physical fitness classes at all levels of school from K through 12. Steven (Stevie) Grimsley

Diet drinks at Hoggard, etc.

I for one am allergic to Aspartame. I know others who are. Diet drinks have Aspartame/Equal in them. I believe it to be a good thing that Diet Drinks are not in the machines. Also, taxes on soft drinks are not needed.

Barb you don't have to buy

Barb you don't have to buy or drink diet drinks if you are allergic to them. You would think highschoolers new how to read at least that much.

Now, they want to tell us

Now, they want to tell us what we should and shouldn't drink. Am I the only one who sees hints of socialism here?


I hope the people that voted for change are enjoying the change. This is just an example of a government that is controlled too much by one party. The Democrats have had their hands tied for years because the Republican Party still had some power. The true agenda of the Liberals have been let out of their cages and they will continue to bring more and more legislation to the table to control every aspect of your lives. They are flexing the new found power at every issue possible. Rule I in Rahm Emanuel's play book: Never let a good crisis go to waste. Is that change jingling in your pocket sounding that great now?


Do some research my friend. This is not a bill in congress, it isn't a law trying to be passed. It is actually health experts and the commissioner of NY Health Dept suggesting a way to fight obesity and increase tax revenue. It has nothing to do with this so called liberal agenda you seem to be so scared of. I think you will find most liberals do not agree with this tax.


Do some research my friend. This is not a bill in congress, it isn't a law trying to be passed. It is actually health experts and the commissioner of NY Health Dept suggesting a way to fight obesity and increase tax revenue. It has nothing to do with this so called liberal agenda you seem to be so scared of. I think you will find most liberals do not agree with this tax I have done my homework, maybe you should practice what you preach. Read the articles below and you will find that it is state wanting to do this, for….guess what??? The taxes I am not scared of the liberal agenda, I am concerned at what seems to be an agenda of tax, tax tax…..I speak of the liberals in government, not you or liberals like you. "Washington, D.C. - Governors, state legislators, and members of Congress interested in simultaneously bridging budget gaps and improving public health should look north to Maine. There, the legislature passed and Governor John Baldacci signed a package of tax increases on soda, beer and wine to help pay for a state health insurance program for small businesses and the self-employed. The nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest, which has long supported modest increases in taxes on soda and alcoholic beverages if the revenues are used to promote public health, applauded Maine policy makers". "The Paterson administration’s proposal to charge an 18 percent sales tax on sugary sodas and juice drinks — an effort that state officials said would reduce obesity while raising more than $400 million a year for health programs — has already touched off a vigorous debate among New Yorkers, nutrition experts and officials from the beverage industry, which vowed to fight the proposal".

Tax on sugared drinks

Well, well well, doesn't this beat all. Let's over tax the citizens who like a pepsi or coke even more. Taxes are way out of control as it is, so let's make up another excuse to tax us more. Something has got to give. This is going way too far. Is the soda is making you fat, give it up. We have alot more problems to worry about than getting fat from soda's. Get a grip. The law makers that pass that ought to be run out of office.

More Taxes

Here it is, the increase of taxes on anything they deem unhealthy, this is just the beginning, first tobacco products, now its soft drinks, what's next????? When the nonsmokers get hit in the pocket book for something they like, will they wake up then??? The issue is not about what product is good or bad for you, it is the intrusion of government into your private life, making decisions that take away your freedom of choice!!!!!

There are definitely some

There are definitely some people out there that need to get he Heck Outta Dodge and quit using peoples tax dollars for reasons/excuses to stop certain things in life, just "Because"! Why don't they want to tax patches on kids blue jeans while they are at it/or rain when it hits the ground/or...Yes...even Sunshine??????? These people that drum up these ideas such as tax on a sugared beverage should be drug tested on a weekly basis, and then there will be reason found to eliminate these idiots from their positions that purpose such garbage ideas. How to stop these that wants $ for idiotic reasons? Well...just quit bringing them and their stories into the news!!!


hey group.. The beverage companies can solve all this problem. Simply quit making the products that are so called bad for us.. bet the protests, complaints, and everything else will stop.. of course all shelves in all stores etc may be empty... good luck....