#Budget18: Sugar tax introduced on fizzy drinks

A sugar tax is being introduced in line with the commitment made in the programme to Government and a full consultation process.

The levels are consistent with the rates being introduced in the UK and will commence at the same time in April next year subject to State aid approval.

There will be a 30c tax on a litre of fizzy drinks with 8g per 100ml.

Additionally, a reduced rate of 20c tax will apply on a litre of fizzy drinks with 5-8g per 100ml.

Graphics below from @IRLDeptFinance and @IRLDeptPER.

#Budget18: Sugar tax introduced on fizzy drinks

Recently appointed clinical lead for obesity, Professor Donal O'Shea welcomed the introduction of the sugar tax.

Speaking on The Ray D'Arcy Show on RTÉ Radio 1, Prof. O'Shea said consunmption would be reduced.

"The Government had to act, we have a public health crisis, and this won't work on its own. If we hadn't introduced it now, it just would have been really disappointing.

"Introduce it, see will it do what we estimate that it will do and then react. If a tax doesn't work at changing behaviour, you have to take that into account," he said.

Prof O'Shea said that he will advocate for more money, generated from the funding of this tax, to go towards the prevention of obesity, saying that a large part of money should be put into the Junior Certificate curriculum, that has health and well being in it for the first time.

"If you don't use the money, or an equivalent amount of money for preventive measures for obesity, then the sugar tax is not doing what it can do in the ideal world," he added.

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