The Overhaul of the Food Strategy Calls for a £ 3 Billion Tax on Sugar and Salt
The national food strategy includes a newly extended tax on sugar and salt. The UK could impose a new £ 3 billion tax on sugar and salt as part of a series of reforms aimed at improving the country's health and tackling climate change. Covid has offered a "painful reality check" by warning that a poor diet contributes to an estimated sixty-four thousand deaths each year in England with an estimated cost of £ 74 billion to the economy.
The National Food Strategy also highlighted the environmental damage caused by food production, stating that the UK had a "golden" opportunity to rethink its diet. The review called on ministers to impose a tax of £ 3 / kg on sugar and £ 6 / kg on salt, which is sold in large quantities for use in processed foods or in restaurants and catering.
This will prompt manufacturers to reduce sugar and salt levels in their foods by reformulating recipes or reducing portion sizes, and the report says the sugar and salt reformulation tax will be between 2.9 billion and 3.4 billion pounds a year.
The tax money should be used to fund free school meals. The review called on the government to raise the family income threshold from £ 7,400 to £ 20,000 before benefits, as this would require 1.1 million more children. Other recommendations include the legal requirement for all food companies with more than 250 employees to publish an annual report on their sales of various foods, as well as the approval of fruit and vegetable recipes in the NHS.
The Food Foundation charity hailed the proposals as a "bold and exciting vision" and urged the government to give the report "the attention and work it deserves. But the Taxpayers Alliance warned that the "very regressive" tax could cost consumers up to £ 4.8 billion a year.