Many kids and families in our communities are suffering from preventable conditions like type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease. It’s time Vermont invests in proven initiatives to end these epidemics.
Soda and sugary drinks are the single biggest sources of added sugar in Americans’ diets, contributing to high rates of diabetes, some cancers, obesity, and heart disease 1. These diseases not only hurt the quality of life for many Vermonters, but they are costing the state and its employers hundreds of millions of dollars each year in health care expenses and lost productivity 2. Heavy consumption of soda and other sugary drinks, marketed by multinational soda corporations, is fueling this public health crisis 3.
To make the healthier beverage choice the easier choice for Vermont consumers and lower health care costs over the long term, we support a tax on soda and sugary drinks. Using the approximately $34 million in new revenue raised by this tax, we can fund programs to help achieve urgent public health and wellness goals by:
- maintaining or expanding access to affordable health care and oral health care
- increasing the ability of low-income Vermonters to access affordable nutritious foods
- increasing projects that support active living in Vermont communities by, for example, making them more walkable and bike friendly
Majority of Vermonters Support a Tax on Sugary Drinks
“VTD/CPI polling... shows that 57 percent of respondents would support an additional tax on sugary drinks to support health care for low-income Vermonters...
Taking Aim at Goliath
“As an author, I'm always looking for a good story, and Vermont has a great one. One of the smallest states in the nation is taking on the Goliath of the beverage industry...
U.S. Advisory Panel Calls for Reduced Consumption of Added Sugar: Proposes Taxing Sugary Drinks
“The recommendation comes after studies tied snacks and sugary beverages to high obesity rates... Higher sugar-sweetened beverage taxes may encourage consumers to reduce sugar-sweetened beverage consumption...
Is a soda tax the solution to America’s obesity problem?
“Obesity costs. A lot. The tab comes in obvious ways, like increased health care costs, and less obvious ways, like decreased fuel efficiency. And we’re all paying... If more taxpayer money is going out, it’s gotta come from somewhere, and one possible somewhere is a soda tax...
Help us show the soda and sugary drinks industry that the voice of Vermonters won’t be drowned out by corporate cash.
The soda and sugary drinks industry has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in Vermont on campaign contributions to politicians, slick advertisements, and corporate lobbyists to oppose a tax on soda and sugary drinks. The industry opposes our sensible proposal because they fear it will succeed in reducing unhealthy levels of soda and sugary drink consumption.
The Alliance for a Healthier Vermont is a statewide, grassroots issue-advocacy campaign. Volunteer to help us fight for public health. Together we will make history.
Block G. Foods contributing to energy intake in the US: Data from NHANES III and NHANES 19992000. J Food Comp Anal 17 (2004): 439-47.
E. A. Finkelstein, I. C. Fiebelkorn, and G. Wang, State-level estimates of annual medical expenditures ....attributable to obesity, Obesity Research, vol. 12 no. 1 (January 2004), pp. 18-24.
The data are inflation adjusted estimates from Finkelstein et al 2004 , using a medical care CPI for 2003-2013, which is 1.431 (based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics). Recent changes in Medicaid are not incorporated in this analysis.
Andreyeva T, Luedicke J, Wang YC. State-level estimates of obesity-attributable costs of absenteeism. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2014, in press.
Woodward-Lopez*, Janice Kao and Lorrene Ritchie, To what extent have sweetened beverages contributed to the obesity epidemic? Public Health Nutrition p. 4 (2010)
Malik, et al., DIABETES CARE, VOLUME 33, NUMBER 11, NOVEMBER 2010