It is common knowledge nowadays that consuming sugar-sweetened beverages (“SSBs”) is associated with obesity, diabetes, and other poor health outcomes. 40% of the American public consumes 300-800 calories a day from soda. Unsurprisingly, over 40% of the American public is obese, with roughly 30% falling into the overweight category. Governments have sought to combat this issue by levying a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages to raise their price and deter their consumption. In this way, SSB taxes are the modern-day version of taxes on cigarettes. In this blog post, I will outline the different taxes on sugar sweetened beverages across the countries of Ireland, Italy, Portugal, and the United States and compare the rates of obesity in each country and state to analyze the possible effects of the taxes on the populations.
This post was originally published on the Cardozo International & Comparative Law Review website on October 5, 2021. The original post can be accessed via the Archived Link button above.
D'Alleva, Juliana, "Are Taxes on Sugary Beverages the Answer to the Obesity Epidemic?" (2021). CICLR Online. 23.