I want candy

So, I’m in a total i-player mood at the moment. I just watched a Panorama episode which questioned whether there should be a higher tax on junk food.

Myself, I’m torn. On the one hand, there are proven cases where taxation has decreased intake (cigarettes for one) and this can only reduce the number of obese adults and health problems related to that. It would also increase the amount of money this country has, which after a recession cannot be bad. This money can be spent reducing the costs of healthy food or hospital care or maybe even better playing areas for children.

Less consumption also means less packaging waste (think of how much cardboard and paper get throw away with your average Maccy D’s) which is better for the environment.

So it’s better for your body, better for your community and better for the world; so what’s my problem?

I am poor. I admit it and I won’t be un-poor for at least the next ten years. And I enjoy my junk food, because being Veggie doesn’t mean being a health-nut. I love crisps, sweets and takeaway. But if they raise the prices then I won’t be able to afford it. And I dislike the idea that the government has the right to tell me what I can and can’t eat.

It’s like the higher taxes they put on alcohol and the alcohol awareness adverts that plague our tv. I don’t drink often as it is, partly because I’m not a big fan and partly because it’s just so damn expensive. But the thing is that the rise in price doesn’t stop alcoholics from buying booze and the proposed rise in junk food prices won’t stop junk-food addicts from eating sugar and fat. It will prevent the casual junk food eaters like me from buying it as much.

Maybe the best route is that the government puts a higher tax on this food, which will subsidise healthy food.

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