Junk Food tax in Australia – a good thing?

With 6 in 10 Australian adults and then one in four children considered over weight in Australia What can we do to curb this trend? Recently in Denmark there has been a ‘fat tax’ passed on junk food adding one euro to the cost per half kilogram of saturated fat to any food that contains more than 2.3 % saturated fat, Denmark has also already banned the use of trans fats in 2004.

So would this be good for Australia? With the ever rising obesity issues in Australia it is time to take some form of stand. Like the alcolpop tax which has curbed drinking in Australia by 30 percent in pre mixed drinks and taxes on tobacco having effects on smoking habits then a ‘Fat tax’ could do the same.

So would this deter people or would we just pay the extra money for the food? From the price of actually healthy food going up in price more so than junk food and the decline in people consuming healthy food there is a connection between the two (price and consumption).

If a tax was included into the price of junk food and soft drink and sugary cereals the question to ask the government is what they would put back into the community to combat obesity. There are different things being suggested, such as putting a subsidy on healthy food for lower income houses or on healthy food period. There are also suggestions for more to go into education of families on healthy lifestyles and impacts of poor eating.

In conjunction with education there have been calls for more to be done on advertising and marketing to people (especially children) for junk food. Even with education society has been engineered to desire unhealthy food from a young age and once habits are in place it is very hard to change them.

Data on adverstising on the three main tv stations

I believe personally that the government then should be striving to then subsidise gym and personal training prices for the general population and more education on why physical activity is important for overall well being. A lot of work sites and business have begun doing this for overall productivity but maybe it’s time for the government to subside the whole industry.

Having a fat tax I personally believe is a great idea but a lot of the solutions being suggested are either band aid solutions or never get off the ground in part to corporate greed. The obesity situation is almost out of control and it is time for massive changes to be made in society and a fat tax will be a first step towards achieving a fitter healthier Australia.

 

Sources:

 

http://www.smh.com.au/national/drinking-drops-as-alcopop-tax-bites-20100527-whun.html

http://www.news.com.au/money/flab-tax-may-be-good-for-australians/story-e6frfmci-1226156405846

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2 Responses to Junk Food tax in Australia – a good thing?

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