I’m in favour of comprehensive action to tackle obesity rather than singular measures that target individual products, but Thailand’s new sugar tax seems to make more sense than most.
It comes into effect on 16th September and the merits I could discern are:
• It’s designed to improve health and not just to support government finances.
• It has a six year strategy.
• It provides incentives as well as disincentives.
• So taxes will go down on sugar free beverages and progressively increase on high sugar products.
• The sugar threshold of 6g per 100ml is based on WHO standards.
• Its aim is to encourage change by both manufacturers and consumers.
However, every silver lining has its cloud. The tax rates and product categories have yet to be defined.