The nonprofit Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) has criticized proposed legislation, SB 1085, which would place an additional tax of one cent per ounce on sugar-sweetened beverages.
The bill will next be considered by the Ways and Means Committee before going to the Senate floor.
CCF contents the proposal to tax sugar-sweetened beverages is absurdly misguided when it comes to promoting weight loss. Study after study has demonstrated soda is not a unique contributor to obesity.
In fact, a recent analysis by the National Cancer Institute found soft drink intake actually accounts for less than 7 percent of the average person’s daily calories.
“Taxes shouldn’t be a tool for social engineering or an instrument to penalize Hawaiians for doing nothing wrong,” said J. Justin Wilson, Senior Research Analyst at the Center for Consumer Freedom. “Residents of Hawaii don’t need a Ph.D. in Nutrition to tell them that eating or drinking too much of anything is unhealthy; it only takes a little common sense and personal responsibility.”
While the soda tax may enlarge Hawaii’s government coffers, it won’t slim down residents of the Aloha State.The author of a recent soda tax study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine determined that people would likely switch to un-taxed beverages with the same amount of calories such as whole milk or fruit juice, leaving a soda tax as primarily a money-making exercise for the government.
“Sugar-sweetened beverages are no more fattening than any other food with calories,” Wilson said. “It’s only the overconsumption of calories, whether from soda or other foods and drinks, that leads people to put on extra pounds.”
The Center for Consumer Freedom is a nonprofit coalition supported by restaurants, food companies, and consumers, working together to promote personal responsibility and protect consumer choices.
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