每天学个英语知识点 Tax on drinks proposed 英国拟对含糖饮料征税

Vocabulary: food & health 词汇: 食品 & 健康

Would you drink less fizzy drinks if the price was higher?

Obesity is back in the headlines in the UK, with the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges calling for fizzy drinks to be heavily taxed and junk food adverts banned until after the watershed.

The body, which represents doctors in the country, has called for unhealthy foods to be treated more like cigarettes, which were the target of a successful campaign.

Prof Terence Stephenson, the chair of the Academy, said: “That required things like a ban on advertising and a reduction in marketing and the association of smoking with sporting activities – that helped people move away from smoking.”

A quarter of adults in the UK are considered obese, which makes it one of the nations where the problem is most prevalent.

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Stephenson believes there is no “silver bullet” for tackling the problem of expanding waistlines; instead, the entire culture around eating needs to change to make it easier to make healthy decisions.

The Academy’s recommendations include: a £100m budget for treatments like weight-loss surgery; the banning of junk food and vending machines in hospitals, where all food must meet the same nutritional standards as in schools; and information about calories for children on food labels.

The British Soft Drinks Association rejected the idea that a tax on fizzy drinks, which it said contributed to “just 2%” of the total calories in an average diet, would address a problem “which is about overall diet and levels of activity”.

Health minister Lord Howe welcomed the report and said he wanted to see “businesses intensifying their efforts as well”.

Some teenagers seem to be getting the healthy food message. George from Peterborough, interviewed by the BBC, believes that the key is moderation. He said: “Just don’t have fizzy drinks every day. It’s the same with things like crisps.”

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