May 13, 2018 #1
In some countries an increasing number of people are suffering from health problems as a result of eating too much fast food. It is therefore necessary for governments to a higher tax on this kind of food. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this opinion?
higher taxes on fast foods?
In the Western World, the percentage of diseas caused by unhealthy food habits is constantly increasing. The development of fast food chains has worstened the situation, creating the need for governments to do something to solve the issue. Some people, for instance, believe that an increase in taxes for this type of food will help. However, I do not agree since there will be a scarce impact on fast food consumption.
Firstly, it is necessary to analyse and identify which are the drivers that influence the choice between healthy food and fast food. For example, people often prefer to eat fast food to save time and not to save money. Consequently, an increase in price would not affect their choice. Instead, if people could find restaurants selling healthy food, such as vegetables and fruit salads, ready-to-eat and available for take-away, they would prefer this kind of food rather than hamburgers and fried chips.
Secondly, an higher taxation on fast food would be perceived by only a small portion of population. A full lunch at McDonald, for example, costs around 8 euros in Europe and even if the government will increase the price of 20%, it will cost less than 10 euros. Also people with a low income will consider this price as affordable and in any case cheaper than the usual price for a lunch.
To sum up, I do not believe that an higher taxation on fast food will help governments in decrease disease due to the scarce impact that the change in price would have on people's nutritional decisions.
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