Have you heard the news?! Philadelphia recently approved a soda tax, and it is the first major city in the United States to do so.
The mayor of Philadelphia, Jim Kenney, fully supported the tax after it was announced that the law had been approved by the City Council by a vote of 13-4.
All sugar sweetened and artificially sweetened beverages, including sodas, non-100% fruit drinks, energy drinks, flavored water, previously sweetened coffee and tea, and other non-alcoholic beverages intended to be mixed with alcohol, will be subject to the Tax of 1.5 cents per ounce.
Although this move may be controversial, revenue is expected to increase the city's revenue by US $ 91 million per year, thanks to the new Philadelphia soft drink tax.
This result did not happen overnight, since the bill did not approve the municipal council vote on two previous occasions. This time, Mayor Kenney agreed that a different approach was necessary, and instead of focusing on the tax as a health initiative, he addressed other financial problems that haunted the "City of Brotherly Love."
Unfortunately, the poverty rate in Philadelphia is incredibly high, with 26 percent of citizens living in extreme poverty, or in other words, having an income below half the federal poverty level. Because of these amazing statistics, Mayor Kenney has named poverty reduction as his top priority.
Kenney has recognized that simply labeling the tax as a health measure was not the best idea since people often reject the idea of being "told" what is healthy for them. This being the case, the objective was to divert the intention of the tax to focus on reducing poverty in the city, which can be done through education.
To use the tax accordingly, Kenney agreed to dedicate the estimated $ 91 million income to financially advance universal preschool education as part of the goal of reducing poverty levels by strengthening the education system. The financing of the schools and community projects, such as the renovation of parks, the improvements in the recreation centers and the changes of image of the library, will benefit from the tax on sodas.
The benefits of education in areas that experience poverty
Reduces poverty Increases income Increases economic growth Promotes gender equality Reduces teen pregnancy rates
Of course, this movement has provoked outrage from the American Beverage Association, which has pledged to "take legal action to stop it," and calls the movement a "regressive tax that unfairly singles out beverages, including low-calorie options. and without calories. " They have even come to claim that taxes are "discriminatory and highly unpopular," referring not only to Philadelphia but to all of America. Fortunately, Kenney is ready to take the fight and believes that he and his team have solid legal grounds to continue applying the tax.
Berkeley, California, is the only other city in the United States with a similar tax. While Berkeley has a significantly smaller population than Philadelphia, however, it is expected that this historic law could set a precedent not only for other cities in the US. UU., But also on a global scale.
We all know by now that soft drinks are a "rare" or "never" food. Let's look at the main problems with the consumption of soft drinks and other sugary drinks …
How soda affects your health
Dissolves tooth enamel
The sugar and acid in the sweetened beverages dissolve the enamel of the teeth, which produces rotten teeth and infected gums.
Increase in heart disease
High-fructose corn syrup, a sweetener often found in sodas, has been associated with an increased risk of metabolic syndrome, a condition associated with an increased risk of both diabetes and heart disease.
The soda cans are coated with a resin that contains the toxic chemical BPA (bisphenil-A). This is the same cancer-causing industrial chemical found in plastic water bottles, baby bottles and plastic take-away containers. Unfortunately, BPA causes havoc in the endocrine system and can affect reproduction.
What are your thoughts on the soda tax? Share in the comments below!
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