Philadelphia’s tax on sweetened beverages led to a 38.9% drop in the volume of taxed beverages sold at small, independent retailers and a significant increase in the price of taxed beverages, according to new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
This study builds on previous research that suggests beverage taxes can help reduce purchases of sugary drinks, led by Christina Roberto, an associate professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at Penn, and senior author on this latest paper published in Health Affairs.
“Beverage taxes are a win-win: they decrease purchases of sugary drinks that are making us sick, and in Philadelphia, also raise revenue for important programs supporting children’s education,” Roberto says.
In January 2017, Philadelphia implemented an excise tax of 1.5 cents per ounce on sugar- and artificially sweetened beverages, to raise revenue for education initiatives. This is the first study to examine the impact of the tax on volume sales at small stores.
Researchers report that a year after Philadelphia’s tax on sweetened beverages went into effect, the price of taxed drinks in the small independent stores they studied increased by 1.81 cents per ounce and the volume of taxed beverages sold had dropped 38.9%.
This story is by Melissa Moody. Read more at Penn Medicine News.