Bulgaria’s Health Minister Proposes to Introduce 'Junk Food' Tax
Bulgaria’s Health Minister Petar Moskov has proposed to introduce a new tax on producers of “junk food” to stimulate the use of healthy food, particularly by children and adolescents.
"This is not a struggle between the food industry and the state's wish that certain types of food didn't contain so many provenly harmful substances,” Moscov said at a ceremony marking the start a Bulgarian government campaign For Healthy Generation aimed at promoting healthy lifestyle.
Moscov called for a joint effort by food industry, the state, government agencies and politicians alike to promote the need to change eating habits toward more healthy eating.
“When sugar, salt or caffeine content of a drink or a dessert is as much as half the content of the whole thing you are buying, this must not go on like that,” Moskov said, according to BNR radio broadcaster.
The poor health outcomes associated with the consumption of energy-dense food such as obesity and high blood pressure may justify levying taxes on highly processed, energy-dense foods to pay for health care and to decrease consumption, a measure that has proved effective for tobacco control, the World Health Organisation has said.
Introducing taxes on less healthy foods could create a financial incentive for consumers to avoid them, according to WHO.
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