UK’s soft drinks tax raises £153.8m as public turn on sugar

UK’s tax of soft drinks raises £153.8m as public turn on sugar
Credit: Marcos Mesa Sam Wordley

Government figures have shown that since the UK sugar tax on soft drinks came into effect back in April, it has raised £153.8 million.

As the above figure only covers the period to the end of October, the tax will likely raise £240 million originally expected for the full year.

Although the impact of the sugar tax has been called in to question, it’s clear it’s having some effect as the public increasingly looks to reduce their sugar intake, not just with soft drinks but right across the food and beverage spectrum.

Indeed, a new survey from Public Health England shows overwhelming public support for reducing sugar and calories in everyday foods.

The survey, carried out by Ipsos MORI, found around 9 in 10 people support the government working with the food industry to make everyday foods and drinks healthier.

Helping the NHS was named as one of the main reasons for people supporting this work.

This applied to all sectors, and no concessions were made for food consumed in restaurants, coffee shops or cafes, despite this often being labelled as a ‘treat’.

These figures come as Duncan Selbie, chief executive of Public Health England, tells the food industry that next year PHE will highlight where progress has not been made on sugar reduction and that this may result in further action from the government.