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The Effects of Soft Drink Taxes on Child and Adolescent Consumption and Weight Outcomes

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  • Jason Fletcher
  • David Frisvold
  • Nathan Tefft

Abstract

Childhood and adolescent obesity is associated with serious lifetime health consequences and has seen a recent rapid increase in prevalence. Soft drink consumption has also expanded rapidly, so much so that soft drinks are currently the largest single contributors to energy intake. In this paper, we investigate the potential for soft drink taxes to combat rising levels of adolescent obesity through a reduction in consumption. Our results, based on state soft drink sales and excise tax information between 1988 and 2006 and the National Health Examination and Nutrition Survey, suggest that soft drink taxation, as currently practiced in the United States, leads to a moderate reduction in soft drink consumption by children and adolescents. However, we show that this reduction in soda consumption is completely offset by increases in consumption of other high calorie drinks.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta) in its series Emory Economics with number 0908.

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Date of creation: Aug 2009
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Handle: RePEc:emo:wp2003:0908

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Kaisa Kotakorpi & Tommi Härkänen & Pirjo Pietinen & Heli Reinivuo & Ilpo Suoniemi & Jukka Pirttilä, 2011. "The Welfare Effects of Health-based Food Tax Policy," CESifo Working Paper Series 3633, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Grossman, Michael & Tekin, Erdal & Wada, Roy, 2013. "Food Prices and Body Fatness among Youths," IZA Discussion Papers 7465, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Bonnet, Céline & Réquillart, Vincent, 2011. "Tax incidence with strategic firms on the soft drink market," TSE Working Papers 11-233, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE), revised Jul 2012.
  4. Zhen, Chen & Brissette, Ian & Ruff, Ryan, 2013. "By Ounce or By Calorie: The Different Effects of Alternative Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Tax Strategies," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150194, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  5. Javier Rivas & Miguel Flores, 2011. "Cash Incentives and Unhealthy Food Consumption," Discussion Papers in Economics 11/47, Department of Economics, University of Leicester, revised Jan 2012.
  6. Georgia S. Papoutsi & Andreas C. Drichoutis & Rodolfo M. Nayga Jr., 2013. "The Causes Of Childhood Obesity: A Survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(4), pages 743-767, 09.
  7. Georgia S. Papoutsi & Rodolfo M. Nayga & Panagiotis Lazaridis & Andreas C. Drichoutis, 2013. "Nudging parental health behavior with and without children's pestering power: Fat tax, subsidy or both?," Working Papers 2013-5, Agricultural University of Athens, Department Of Agricultural Economics.
  8. Guy E.J. Faulkner & Paul Grootendorst & Van Hai Nguyen & Tatiana Andreyeva & Kelly Arbour-Nicitopoulos & Chris Auld & Sean B. Cash & John Cawley & Peter Donnelly & Adam Drewnowski & Laurette Dubé & R, 2011. "Economic Instruments for Obesity Prevention: Results of a Scoping Review and Modified Delphi Survey," Development Research Unit Working Paper Series 31-11, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  9. Silvia Prina & Heather Royer, 2013. "The Importance of Parental Knowledge and Social Norms: Evidence from Weight Report Cards in Mexico," NBER Working Papers 19344, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Michael Hoy & Mattias Polborn, 2014. "The Value of Technology Improvements in Games with Externalities: A Fresh Look at Offsetting Behavior," CESifo Working Paper Series 4798, CESifo Group Munich.
  11. Fabrice Etile, 2013. "L'économie des consommations à risques au miroir des politiques de santé publique," Working Papers 221515, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France.
  12. Colantuoni, Francesca & Rojas, Christian, 2012. "Have soda sales tax effects changed over time? Scanner data comparison analyses," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124806, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  13. Bauhoff, Sebastian, 2014. "The effect of school district nutrition policies on dietary intake and overweight: A synthetic control approach," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 12(C), pages 45-55.
  14. Hahn, William F. & Davis, Christopher G., 2014. "Costs of Taxing Sodium: A Lunch Meat Application," International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IAMA), vol. 17(A).
  15. Colantuoni, Francesca & Rojas, Christian, 2013. "Heterogeneous behavior, obesity and storability in soft drink consumption: A dynamic demand model," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150340, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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