Mana tax on junk food has European precedents

Published: Mon 10 Oct 2011 10:09 AM
For Immediate Release
Monday 10 October 2011
Mana tax on junk food has European precedents
Another Mana movement tax proposal has been implemented in Europe.
“Following France and Germany announcing last month their support for a “Hone Heke” Financial Transactions tax, other European countries are implementing a tax on junk food,” says Mana Economic Justice spokesperson John Minto.
Last week Denmark introduced a new tax on foods which contain more than 2.3% saturated fat. The tax is NZ51c on a packet of butter and NZ16c on a pack of potato chips. This follows Hungary which recently imposed a tax on all foods with unhealthy levels of sugar, salt and carbohydrates as well as products with high levels of caffeine.
Mana is campaigning for a similar tax here on junk foods and soft drinks. We need it more than Denmark or Hungary because we have much higher levels of obesity and a predicted explosion of diabetes with massive cost to our health system.
We are already the third most obese country in the world.
“The small additional cost for people buying junk food will be offset by Mana abolishing GST completely and dropping tax on the first $27,000 earned. Everyone on low and middle incomes will be better off – and healthier.”
“We need Mana’s tax policies NOW and yet Labour and National are in denial. They are happy for the junk food industry to reap massive profits from New Zealanders who must then find the money to pay for the health problems these international chains have created.
“Mana also wants local communities to have a veto on the junk-food outlets in their areas. Research in several countries shows the more junk food outlets children have around them, the more obese they are. It’s as simple as that.
A country which respects its children would take action. Labour and National won’t but Mana will.

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