Geoff Ogle, Chief Executive at Food Standards Scotland said:
“The soft drinks industry levy comes into effect today. We welcome this measure and the positive steps industry has already taken by reformulating some soft drinks products so they contain less sugar.
“While we hope the soft drinks industry levy will help drive down the consumption of sugar and reduce calorie intake, the evidence in Scotland is that much more needs to be done. Our recent situation report: The Scottish Diet: It needs to change 2018 has shown that while purchase of sugary soft drinks had decreased from 2010 to 2016 this has been offset by an increase in sugar purchased from other foods. We have been encouraged by the speed at which the proposed sugar levy generated changes to the formulation of soft drinks and the question to be asked now is if other foods have the same amount of sugar or indeed more shouldn’t they be subject to a levy too? Reformulation is certainly helping with sugar reduction, but the levy introduction has shown the pace that can be generated when changes such as this are introduced.
“We need government, industry and individuals to work together for Scotland to have a bold and ambitious approach if we are going to change the narrative of obesity levels of 40% by 2030.”