ERS_snacktax - D I E T A N D H E A LT H F I N D I N G S...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Salty snacks are an American favorite. Ninety-nine percent of U.S. households purchased some salty snacks, which include potato chips, corn chips, pretzels, tortilla chips, cheese puffs, microwave popcorn, and nuts, in 1999. On average, each U.S. household spent $76 on 32 pounds of salty snacks. Backers of a proposed tax on snack foods argue that such a tax will improve diets and health by reducing consumption. Selective taxation of particular food items is rare for the Federal Government. Now, some public health advocates and health researchers are proposing an excise tax on snack foods as a way to reduce the prevalence of obesity in the United States. Three varia- tions on such a tax have emerged, each envisioning a different path- way toward improving consumers’ diets and health. A tax imposed on snack foods that is paid by consumers would increase the price of snack foods and might give consumers an incentive to cut back on such items. A consumer-paid tax targeted at foods that contain partic- ular unhealthy food attributes, such as saturated fat, might encourage food manufacturers to reformulate their products and offer con- sumers more healthful alternatives. The third variation involves ear- marking the tax revenue to fund information programs promoting healthy diets and lifestyles. Whether such a tax will change consumers’ diets depends on how big an incentive the tax provides for consumers and how respon- sive consumers are to price increases. ERS researchers used ACNielsen Homescan panel data to examine likely impacts of taxes on consumers’ dietary choices. Households providing the data recorded their food purchases from grocery stores and other retailers using in- home scanners.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 01/18/2012 for the course PADP 8670 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '10 term at University of Georgia Athens.

Page1 / 2

ERS_snacktax - D I E T A N D H E A LT H F I N D I N G S...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online