Published: June 2014

ID #: 66971

Journal: Amer J Agr Econ

Authors: Zhen C, Brissette IF, Ruff RR

See more related research

Share


This paper examines the differential effects that taxing sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) by calories and by ounce have on beverage demand. Based on sales data from supermarkets across four New York state regions, researchers predict that a calorie-based SSB tax is more effective than an ounce-based tax because it achieves more calorie reduction with a smaller loss in consumer surplus. A 0.04 cent per-calorie tax on SSBs is predicted to reduce the consumption of beverage calories by 9.3 percent versus a reduction of 8.6 percent from a half-cent per-ounce tax. Applying this percentage to beverages purchased from a variety of retail outlets, and assuming consumer purchasing behavior remains consistent across all venues, a 0.04 cent per-calorie tax would reduce total per person consumption by about 5,800 calories annually, while a half-cent per-ounce tax would achieve less of a reduction. A calorie-based beverage tax cost an estimated $1.40 less in consumer surplus loss than an ounce-based tax, per 3,500 beverage calories reduced.

Related Research

November 2009

Studying the Effect of Beverage Taxes on Children’s Energy Intake and Tax Revenue

Health advocates have increasingly argued for taxes on calorically sweetened beverages. However, there is little empirical research that evaluates the public health and fiscal impacts of such taxes while simultaneously accounting for consumers’ and suppliers’ likely changes in economic behavior in response to a targeted tax. The aim of this study is to use econometric More

November 2023

Evaluating the impact of state-level economic-support policies on the nutritional health of kids and families

To address ongoing concerns of child poverty across the United States, states have introduced and modified family economic security policies related to the state minimum wage (MW) and state earned income tax credit (EITC). While poor nutritional health disproportionately impacts children who experience poverty, few studies have examined the potentially beneficial effects of state-level MW More

November 2023

Effects of a front-of-package disclosure on accuracy in assessing children’s drink ingredients: two randomised controlled experiments with US caregivers of young children

This study aimed to test the effects of a standardized front-of-package (FOP) disclosure statement (indicating added sugar, non-nutritive sweetener (NNS) and juice content) on accuracy in assessing ingredients and perceived healthfulness of children’s drinks. In two randomized controlled experiments, the same participants (six hundred and forty-eight U.S. caregivers of young children ages 1-5 years) viewed More