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Thread: A Sugar Tax - Discuss.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    A Sugar Tax - Discuss.

    Britain has introduced a "Sugar Tax".
    You can read something about it in these links:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...-freefall.html
    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/527afaaa-9...#axzz436p2tDAZ
    http://fortune.com/2016/03/16/sugar-tax-soft-drinks/

    There are calls to do the like here. What are your thoughts?

    I will start with one of mine: There goes the neighbourhood! People will balk at lending new
    neighbours a cup of sugar.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Ausphotography Regular Cricket's Avatar
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    I personally think the sugar tax is a good idea. It helps pay for the health care of those with diabetes and other diseases caused but too much sugar in our diet. The other thing I would really love to see is a litter tax placed on takeaway food places like MacDonalds, Hungry Jacks, KFC and the likes as there is so much takeaway packaging just thrown out the windows of cars. We live in a rural area and see MacDonald wrappings along the roadside drains and the nearest takeaway food shop is in town miles from us

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    Member wayn0i's Avatar
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    Good idea cricket I'm for the litter tax


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    Ausphotography Regular Boo53's Avatar
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    I think we'd have no hope of getting it up in Australia, too many Nationals seats in sugar growing areas, something the poms don't have.

    We do tax alcohol and cigs, but that was just a way of raising revenue and only later did the health implications of higher taxes get mentioned to justify higher levels.

    If the tax was all used on health promotion/support I would probably support it (I don't drink sugary soft drink) but alcohol, cigarette and fuel taxes just disappear in to consolidated revenue and mask the need for more sophisticated tax reform.

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    Ausphotography Veteran tandeejay's Avatar
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    The problem I see is that no matter how comprehensive a reform any particular in power government puts forward, the opposition will block in the senate unless certain exceptions/changes/alterations/concessions/etc are made to the plan, and what finally ends up getting implemented is a poor corruption of the original reform that consists of hang-overs from the previous tax system, with probably the worst aspects of both the old and the new... so we never really end up moving forward to a better system...
    John Blackburn

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular
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    By "better system" do you mean chaos and anarchy? I thought we already had that.

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    Ausphotography Veteran tandeejay's Avatar
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    Chaos and anarchy might be better than what we already have... but it isn't necessarily the best... Or else chaos and anarchy is what we end up with when governments fail to make the complete reforms that are necessary.

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    If I may opine just a little: I do not think that such a tax would have the desired effect of significantly (or is that just me?)
    improving the maladies that they say it will. Perhaps some - and then you will get the banal refrain "If it saves just one
    person..." But taxes just seem to be the panacea for every human and social ill. Perhaps if they put taxes into a pill form
    and made that available...? - But then should it be covered by the PBS...? - Or would it be available over the counter?

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    If I may opine just a little: I do not think that such a tax would have the desired effect of significantly (or is that just me?)
    improving the maladies that they say it will.
    Well you may not be able to improve the maladies but if the revenue raised from the tax was used to fund the consequents of what they are taxing then you and I will have to pay a bit less for what others are doing.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo53 View Post

    We do tax alcohol and cigs, but that was just a way of raising revenue and only later did the health implications of higher taxes get mentioned to justify higher levels.
    Yep, and with the cigs continuing to be more expensive due to huge taxes I think we are now hurting the lifestyle of addicts (it's legal) and the less well off (they have more time to waste and have the highest smoking rates now/always).
    It's about time there was an aggressive campaign of trying to help the last people smoking to give up. Keep hearing smoking's bad, gunna keep increasing taxes. Don't here much about smoking's bad, here's how we can help you give up.
    Day 15.

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    Ausphotography Veteran martycon's Avatar
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    AM, well done to trigger an entertaining discussion, as well as alerting us to the serious social consequences.
    Agree with Cricket so long as the feline and canine species are not litterers.
    And Boo53, agree entirely, since I became a non user,
    cheers, marty.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    Britain has introduced a "Sugar Tax".
    .....
    From what I'm reading in those articles linked too, it's sounding like a recipe for disaster and loophole searching.
    All CocaCola has to do is add a few insignificant drops of milk to their vats of Cola and it's now a health product and therefore exempt!

    Just stupid. You either tax sugar ... the actual sugar itself, or not!
    Not some half assed Howard/Democrat GST-esq convolution .. where this drink is taxed and that drink isn't!
    Just plain stupid! Either do it(properly) or don't do it at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cricket View Post
    .... We live in a rural area and see MacDonald wrappings along the roadside drains and the nearest takeaway food shop is in town miles from us
    Seriously amazing at how people treat rural areas .. and more so the beautiful remote areas they travel for hours on end to enjoy the pristine splendour of.
    I kind'a regularly travel to remote desert(y) areas like Flinders Ranges, Lake Eyre ... etc.
    Although it's been a while now(lack of time and all round busyness) .. when I did do it more regularly .. the amount of litter on some of those really remote roads/tracks was mind boggling!
    Firstly, how many folks actually travel those roads, and if it is very few, how long does that discarded packaging take to breakdown?

    Travelling up the Old Ghan track up to Alice Springs from Oodnadatta many years ago, the amount of rubbish along the roads(and dead car bodies!!).
    We hardly saw any other cars past Dalousie/Mt Dare .. maybe one or two per day until we got to a stop/location of any type. So traffic was very sparse, yet the amount of rubbish along the sides of the tracks gave the impression that daily traffic was akin to any major street in any major city!
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    Ausphotography Addict Lplates's Avatar
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    I won't really care if they add a tax to sugary drinks as I rarely drink them. Supposedly introduced to help combat childhood obesity. I guess some will balk at paying the higher price, others won't but in the end it's the parents who buy their childrens' food/drinks and many will still opt for the easy fast food options and having a constant supply of soft drinks in the fridge. I doubt there are many people who don't realise soft drink contains lots of sugar, it's the hidden sugar in sauces/low fat products that worries me more. I think I heard fruit juice will be exempt but nutritionists say it's almost as unhealthy as soft drink as all the fibre has been removed and many are full of sugar.

    On the spot fines for littering would definitely be excellent, it's the implementation that's a problem - more so in regional/rural areas. It always annoys me to see fast food packaging left near tables/chairs at our local parks when there are bins within easy walking distance.

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    Ausphotography Regular John King's Avatar
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    Gidday Am

    A sugar tax could have extremely bad and unintended consequences - e.g. increasing the amount of aspartame consumed! Aspartame is banned by the FDA in the USA after much (slow) investigation, and for very good reasons.

    One really needs to ask why aspartame isn't totally banned in Oz ...

    BTW folks, do not buy non-Australian sugar ... Brazilian sugar has aspartame added to make it taste sweeter!

    [Edit]

    I know there is a lot of BS and hype on this subject, and I'm not generally a food faddist type, but none of the various articles about aspartame mention what happens when it breaks down into methanol, formaldehyde and formic acid prior to ingestion ... I.e. when subjected to temperatures in excess of 80 deg. F, whether in foodstuffs or not.

    I avoid all artificial sweeteners and oils.

    I do have to be extremely careful about what I eat for several important medical reasons.

    [End edit]
    Last edited by John King; 18-03-2016 at 8:34am.
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    Ausphotography Regular John King's Avatar
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    See here for what Wikipedia has to say about health and safety issues wrt aspartame:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aspart...health_effects

    I have seen article/s in peer reviewed magazines that link the pre-ingestion breakdown of aspartame into methanol, formaldehyde and formic acid to serious health issues, but it was a long time ago (late 1990s - early 2000s), so cannot recall the specifics. I remember that at the time it was sufficient for me to avoid this chemical completely.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular
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    Well, with that concoction you'll: go blind, then be preserved, and then... Well apart from ant bites, what's formic acid good for?

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    Ausphotography Regular John King's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    Well, with that concoction you'll: go blind, then be preserved, and then... Well apart from ant bites, what's formic acid good for?
    In a sensitive human (think bee/wasp/ant sting allergies), less than a microgram of formic acid is sufficient to kill ...

    I note that nowhere in the Wikipedia article or attached references I read does it mention what happens if one ingests aspartame that has already broken down into those constituents. With the involvement of major chemical companies, I suspect that this information would be hard to find!

    After all, it took a very, very long time for the link between aspirin and asthma exacerbation/deaths to be recognised, and how many people suffer from asthma and how many take aspirin ... ? And aspirin-like substances; probably includes Ibuprofen and the like. I cannot take any of these medicines, as I take Warfarin. I'm also an asthmatic. Plus a couple of other things ... .

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    Mark mpb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    .... and loophole searching.
    Exactly. What are they actually going to tax, refined sugar? or all the different 'ose's?
    They are already substituting other forms of sugar into soft drinks, like corn syrup, then advertising that it has no added sugar.
    Mark


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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular
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    Quote Originally Posted by mpb View Post
    Exactly. What are they actually going to tax, refined sugar? or all the different 'ose's?
    They are already substituting other forms of sugar into soft drinks, like corn syrup, then advertising that it has no added sugar.
    PAH! By what deranged mentality would that conform to "no added sugar".
    Wiki on corn syrup: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corn_syrup
    Tell yer what's being taxed: OUR BRAYNES.

    I heard something that they were boofing on about that did not contain PALM OIL.

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    New Member EmzDad's Avatar
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    hmmm... interesting subject...
    I work in the Sugar Industry.

    I find it interesting, we were just discussing these type of taxes the other day because of the tax increase on sig's. ( I don't smoke)

    Our basic conclusion was it does not solve the root cause of the problem. It is really only fund raising supposedly to help pay for the after effect.

    The same with a sugar tax, are you going to put a tax on the sugar we pack that is refined and retailed? or the raw post milling? or the cane tonnage that arrives at the mill pre-milling...

    Because it will effect who actually gets to pay the tax?

    Is it a persons choice to consume sugar? How ever they like... drink/ food/ straight off the spoon... .

    So should they not be responsible for there own actions?

    Thanks
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    Ausphotography Regular John King's Avatar
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    Gidday Shane

    I agree with you completely. The Nanny State once again asks for open ended taxing powers.

    IMNSHO, cigarettes (and all other drugs of addiction that are not already properly controlled) should only be available to registered addicts via a doctor's prescription ...

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