Chile, UK, Berry discussed on Gastropod



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But of course, just cutting soda consumption using so detaches pets not the only way to achieve those end goals in my home country. The UK there's been a slightly different approach. So back in twenty sixteen our chance of this czechoslo foreign minister in effect announced that he would introduce a tiered sugar sweetened beverage talks to that that that were different levels of taxation based on how much sugar is in the drink. Adam Briggs is a doctor who studies public health at Oxford University. So you might be thinking, well, what's so different here? It's tax you've told us about taxes. So the way the British tax works is that if your drink has a lot of sugar, it's taxed at a high level if it has somewhat less text at a medium level, and if there's only a little bit of sugar, it's taxed at a low level. There are three different levels. Of Texas and the interesting about the tax system that he announced that it would be introduced off to a two year lead in period. And he said the explicit intention of that was to allow industry to reformulate products will change that products such that they can produce that potential tax liability and the idea of having these three tiers and the two year run up to the tax. It wasn't just to make life more complicated. Like Adams said the whole thing was explicitly designed to encourage beverage companies to take that two years and figure out how to reduce the amount of sugar in their products. So they wouldn't get taxed at the high level. Okay. So we were wondering is there any data showing that this approach would work have any which is what's interesting? Yep. The UK is the Guinea pig in this example, nobody else in the world has ever done it before. So when the chancellor of the exchequer announce this in two thousand sixteen adamant his colleagues were intrigued they wondered how the soda industry. Would actually respond. They figured there were three things that could happen. So to companies could just opt to sell small containers of drinks. So there'd be less sugar in each container. So it would get taxed less the second option. They modeled in their study the companies wouldn't do anything they'd get taxed and they'd raise the price of their drinks accordingly. It'd be like a regular soda tax in our number three was what the chancellor said he wanted to happen, which is reformulation meaning the soda companies would reduce the sugar in that products to go down to a lower level of tax all three cuts, nor that we modeled we found that reformulation we felt we most lucky to have the biggest positive health impact. That's right. Adam predicts that reformulation would have a bigger health impact than the flat taxes that get people to drink less soda after the two year run up the low went into effect at the start of this year. So what happened in reality? So I am of it a team that's independently evaluating the this offering tax here and all day too. Thus for limited. But one thing Adam could tell us is that option three won the soda companies mostly used that two year ramp up to change their recipes and lower the amount of sugar in their sweet drinks these companies, and he's Leukocyte invite Beena are Andrew, which are manufacturers are very popular. So things here UK. I haven't heard of any of these companies, Nikki how big a deal are. They in England. Yes, they are real ri- Beena is a super popular blackcurrant cordial. I feel like it's like catch up. Everyone knows about let home iron brew is basically Scotland's other national drink. It's bright orange and it tastes while physi- and sweet and Lucas but sounds like medicine. It's funny. My mom actually used to give it to me when I'd been sick. It's basically our Gatorade. Okay. So these companies now sell their drinks with less sugar. They've all added artificial sweeteners to replace some of that sugar. This has made lots of British people very unhappy because the taste of their favorite drinks is changed. And while ROY. Formulation definitely reduces the calories in a drink. It does raise some other issues like about the health impacts of the artificial sweeteners themselves, which we are going to come back to early next year. So stay tuned so adamant his colleagues are still collecting data, which means that the jury is still out on whether it tear tax is more effective than a flat tax. What's going on in England that is another kind of tax. But there is an entire other way to approach the question of how to help people cut some sugar from their diet. We started working with our colleagues and Chile and the Chilean government will actually quite a long time ago. This is Barry, pumpkin. Again, he's kind of the go-to guy for a government that wants to try to cut sugar consumption. He worked with Mexico, and they're so detects. And then Chile picked up the phone so berry in the government of Chile. They all came up with a new approach to combat obesity and diabetes. It includes soda. But it also encompasses all the other junk food that folks are eating too late already had a small soda tax too small to make much difference. Berry said. So now, the main tools, they're using our these bold black stop sign shaped warning symbols that are printed on the front of food and drink packages one-stop sign if the food has a lot of fat in it a second if it has a lot of sugar and eight third black stop sign if it has a lot of salt. So this point you might be thinking big whoop. What's so exciting about labels? We have labels on our food. We can read exactly how many grams of sugar are in our sodas, but that doesn't seem to stop anyone from drinking them Sarah said, we get confused by these numbers. We don't know what they mean. We don't know. How many calories were supposed to eat or how many we've already seen? Lots of countries have other kinds of labels often, positively Ables like ones that say healthy choice or low in fat, most of these labels systems of voluntary. And most of them have relatively tiny effects on people's consumption and bus people's health. In fact, industry tends to like, these kinds of positive labels for exactly that reason. So instead chilly went dark these mandatory negative. Front labels. This is something that had never been tried before never in the world. But wait, there's more. It's not just that soda and other sugary foods. Now have these black stop signs on them? It's what you can do. Once you have them labelled like band marketing of this food to kids this summer. Chilly started a complete ban on marketing. So if your product has a warning, local, you cannot advertise it anytime between six AM and ten PM food and drinks with the warning label Kombi brought into schools and food and drinks the warning label. They also can't have fun characters on their packaging, of course, the soda industry fought this move, they fought it all the way to the World Trade Organization, but they lost. So Chile actually won this battle. But are they winning the war? What effect has the Chilean stop signs actually had in terms of cutting sugar and improving public health. It's very big. That's all I can tell you. It's much bigger than the tax. But that doesn't mean. We don't need both we need both this law kicked in about two and a half years ago. And berry is still studying the results. That's why he can't give us many details. But he's really excited about this Chilean program even more excited than he is about what's going on in Mexico or in Philadelphia. Yes, I think I Chile will become the first country in the world to reduce the prevalence obesity. I think it will take five or eight years. But I think I I'm predicting up to now no countries zero countries in the world have reduced obesity and overweight levels Chile will become the first one. This is gobsmack ING. Everyone told us that it was almost impossible to significantly reduce a B city that prevention was the goal actually reducing obesity. How what is it about Chile's plan that so effective will one thing that happened is that just like in the UK industry changed the recipe of their products? They reformulated and they made huge changes. For example. We had Fanta. It had a high. Amount of sugar in it all of a sudden, they added Fanta zero to the market, and then a couple months later, they they cut the sugar in the regular Fanta and the people bought it, but it was a low sugar. Fanta industry has enormous potential to do these changes when they're regulated. They don't do them until they're not berry told us that purchases of the foods and drinks labeled with the stop signs of also gunned down. And the kids are seeing way fewer ads for them. Jillian government has released. A lot of ads themselves to help people understand what the stop signs really mean helped them understand. Why these foods aren't good choices? The. With a bunch of little kids where the kids are clearly rejecting the foods that have black labels on them. And

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