Boris' war on chocolate biscuits! New sugar and salt tax to spark price hike


    The National Food Strategy is calling for a £3 per kg tax on sugar and a £6 per kg tax on salt sold for use in processed foods or in restaurants and catering businesses. The proposed tax would see price rises on treats such as chocolate and crisps.

    A 51g Mars bar costing 60p could jump to 69p under the Sugar and Salt Reformulation Tax, the Daily Mail reported.

    And a 266g packet of McVities Milk Chocolate Digestives could soar from £1.60 to £1.84.

    A 45g packet of Walkers Ready Salted Crisps could set you back 86p, up from 85p, if the tax is brought in.

    A Greggs sausage roll could also rise by 1p to £1.20 under the proposed levy.

    A pack of eight Mr Kipling’s French Fancies faces a 39p price increase from £2.10 to £2.49.

    And a 750g box of Kellogg’s Frosties could soar from £3 to £3.87.

    The report says the proposed tax could lower the average sugar intake by 4-10g per person per day, and the salt intake by 0.2-0.6g per person per day, cutting the average calories eaten per person per day by 15-38 kcal.

    This could completely halt weight gain at a population level – which would require an average reduction of 24 kcal per person per day.

    READ MORE: Campaigner takes aim at ‘elitist’ sugar ‘sin tax’

    The report says: “Halting this trajectory is the single biggest thing we can do to protect the future of our health service.

    “Education and willpower are not enough. We cannot escape this vicious circle without rebalancing the financial incentives within the food system.”

    The tax would incentivise manufacturers to reformulate their recipes or reduce their portion sizes, according to the report.

    It says: “The CEOs of major food companies have told us privately that they cannot make these changes without Government intervention.

    “They need a level playing field if they are to start making their products healthier, otherwise the competition will simply move in and undercut them.”

    The average Briton now consumes five times the volume of crisps than they did in 1972, according to the report.

    And the amount of a household’s grocery budget spent on ingredients for home-cooked food has fallen from an average of 57 percent in 1980 to 35 percent in 2000.

    Meanwhile, the share of processed foods which required little preparation jumped from 26 percent to 45 percent.

    The independent review by Leon founder Henry Dimbleby has sparked criticism from some.

    Food and Drink Federation chief scientific officer Kate Halliwell said: “These taxes will not drive reformulation.

    “Food and drink manufacturers have been voluntarily lowering fat, salt and sugars in recipes for decades as well as reducing portion size, but it takes time to change much-loved products.”

    Christopher Snowdon, head of lifestyle economics at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, added: “Once again, rich people want to clobber ordinary people with stealth taxes, this time on sugar and salt.

    “By Mr Dimbleby’s own admission, this cash grab will cost consumers £3billion, but independent analysis suggests it will cost even more.

    “At a time of rising inflation, after the deepest recession in 300 years, Mr Dimbleby really needs to read the room. He admits that a meat tax would be unpopular and regressive.

    “If Boris Johnson is foolish enough to act on these recommendations, he will soon find the same is true of taxing basic nutrients.”


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