Obesity fear results in falling demand for fizzy drinks

Demand for sugar-laden fizzy drinks in Ireland is falling due to concerns about child obesity, according to a new report.

Ireland is tenth in the world in the soft drinks stakes with the Argentinians topping the table — drinking nearly twice as much as their Irish counterparts.

There has been a slow but consistent decline in demand for minerals in Ireland from 212 330ml cans per person five years ago to 207 such cans per person last year.

Chile and Mexico come in second and third place, respectively, while the US is in fourth.

The Euromonitor International report notes that demand for fizzy beverages has started to drop in recent years in Ireland due to rising concerns about the obesity crisis among children.

“Following government-led public health campaigns, Irish consumers are becoming increasingly health-conscious and look for healthier options among the products they choose,” states the report.

“Amid economic growth and rising demand for soft drinks, carbonates achieved only a flat performance in off-trade volume terms in 2017, being under scrutiny for its high sugar content.

This is particularly prevalent among parents of younger children as Ireland has the greatest number of obese children in Europe.”

The Department of Health is set to impose a tax on sugar-sweetened drinks to help tackle growing levels of obesity next month.

It is estimated that the sugar tax could bring in €30m in 2018 and €40m over the course of a full year.

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