Doctors propose 'fatty foods' tax charge
High-fat foods such as biscuits, cakes and processed meals could be subject to a 17.5% VAT-type charge, if proposals by the British Medical Association are approved.
The proposal comes in response to estimates that obesity-related problems cost the NHS £0.5bn annually, the BBC Online reported.
It is due to be discussed at a public health doctor’s conference, where Dr Martin Breach, a Merseyside-based GP and a member of the BMA’s public health committee, will call for a tax on saturated fats.
However, the idea has already met with some resistance by those who claim it would be a regressive tax, because people on low incomes tend to eat proportionally larger quantities of cheap, high-fat foods.
Ireland is the only country left in the EU which does not impose VAT in various degrees on food products. Hot takeaways served the UK are already subject to VAT.