‘The Sweet Act’ proposal encourages drinking less sugary soda

(Photo: MGN Online)

(Photo: MGN Online)

WASHINGTON, DC (CBS Connecticut) - Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) Wednesday introduced the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax (SWEET) Act to tackle the dual epidemics of obesity and diabetes by discouraging excessive sugar in beverages.

The SWEET Act would institute a tax of 1 cent per teaspoon of caloric sweetener, such as sugar or high-fructose corn syrup. This would add about 9 cents to the cost of a 12-ounce can of Coke.

“People want to be healthy and they want their kids to be healthy. But we are in the midst of dual epidemics, with obesity and diabetes afflicting our nation and the related, astronomical health care costs. There is a clear relationship between sugar-sweetened beverages and a host of other health conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, obesity and tooth decay. We are at a crucial tipping point and the SWEET Act will help correct the path we are currently on,” DeLauro said.

The revenue raised by the SWEET Act would be used to fund initiatives designed to reduce the human and economic costs of obesity, diabetes, dental problems and other health conditions related to sugar-sweetened beverages.

This includes prevention and treatment programs, research and nutrition education. Such diseases are responsible for an estimated $190 billion in annual health care costs, over 20 percent of which are paid by American taxpayers through Medicare and Medicaid.

For the CBS Connecticut article, click here.

7 comments

  • Lin

    Proposed legislation like this is just used as a smoke screen to try to make people “feel good” about doing something about the obesity epidemic in the U.S. The REAL problem lies not JUST in sodas, but in most processed foods. Have you ever looked at the ingredients in your canned tomatoes? Peanut butter? Bread? Spaghetti sauce? Every single one of these, unless they are labeled otherwise, have some form of sugar in them (refined sugar, brown sugar, high-fructose corn syrup [HFCS], etc.). But the government is in bed with the people who produce these foods, so they conveniently overlook the fact that MOST of the foods in our grocery stores today have some kind of added sugar where you least expect it. Soda is just a convenient scapegoat, and adding a tax to it will only make people pay more and line the government’s pockets, while still doing nothing to combat the problem.

  • David Coleman

    The dem’s are good at knowing what is best to do with someone else’s money. I say we put her in burka and ship her off to Afghanistan.

  • Harry Martin

    Government has TWO legal functions under our Constitution.They are: # 1 To provide an Army to protect us from enemies, both foreign and domestic, and # 2 To operate the Post Office! How would you rate their performance on those only two legal functions? It’s certainly not,to warn me about my drinking cola’s!

  • Dan

    Funny that they want to tax coke products when it is cheaper to buy a can of soda instead of a bottle of water. Please tell me how this makes any sense ?? How about making healthy alternatives more affordable instead of taxing other products. Lin your comment could not be more correct. Hence the problem with all the GMO labeling issues going on !

  • David Fischer

    This will not move people to less sugary drinks. It cost more for a bottle of water than for a can of Coke find a way to make it cheaper to drink healthier beverages and then maybe you will see a decline in sugary drink consumption. But The Government has no business dictating what I Drink or eat. If this goes thru whats next Big macs and whoppers Madness

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