• Das Sreedharan

Cut Short the Taste of Sweet With a Tax

The recent uproar over use of excess sugar in food and drinks has been making headlines in Britain. Sugar is the most notorious culprit that causes obesity and many other health problems in children and young people across the globe.


Jamie Oliver, well-known TV chef and campaigner, has been fighting for this cause in America and now has launched his awareness crusade in the UK. He has certainly shaken the whole country about overindulgence of sugar in fizzy drinks. The famous chef  appeared at a meeting in the House of Commons to speak about his convictions and suggested a 20 per cent levy on such drinks.


The press and public reacted favourably on this issue and there is evidence from France and Mexico to show that sugar tax led to fall in sale of unhealthy drinks in the market. As a result of media pressure, some of the hospitals have already increased prices of drinks in their canteens. Although many asked whether a tax alone would be a sufficient solution for a nation’s sugar addiction. Having said that, it could be an important and first step to make people think and take right choices in their diet.



Restaurants could play a pivotal role in educating public. Jamie has taken the lead by making his restaurant chain Jamie’s Italian to increase the prices of their drinks in this fight for public health. Other brands have joined Jamie’s endeavour. Experts say, “Overall use of sugar in food needs good study as industry milk their revenue on a touch of sweet flavour from the beginning to end of a dinner.” Jamie Oliver, spearheading this mammoth responsibility to fight the country’s sweet tooth, feels, “This deeply symbolic sugar tax could raise £1 billion to tackle ill health and appeal industry to intervene, if the government can’t help.”


Sugar dilemma is already a big topic in India too as the number of diabetic patients and people with obesity are on the rise and most youngsters tend to live on unhealthy food. There are reasons why people get hooked on to this today, unlike in the past when a sweet dish was part of a celebration on special occasions and people never used to have sweets daily.


Nowadays, modern coffee shop culture has brought in plenty of pastry and cakes with generous presence of sugar. This has, to some extent, replaced our famous savoury snacks of the past. Chocolate revolution has been won by multinational brands in all countries and a traditional sweet shop outside every restaurant back home doesn’t help either.

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