Indian state imposes “fat tax” – here’s the problem

The Indian state Kerala imposes what the media calls a “fat tax” on junk food served at fast food restaurants to combat obesity. And while it certainly is good that this tax is hitting junk food, the name “fat tax” is a quite misleading.

BBC News: Why Has an Indian State Imposed a ‘Fat Tax’?

Kerala is the first state in India to introduce a “fat tax” on burgers, pizzas, doughnuts and tacos served in branded restaurants.

All these products are equally full of bad carbs, and on top of that people usually drink sugar water with them. So the tax could conceivably just as well be called a “carb tax”.

The word choice shows how outdated paradigms about fat being the cause of obesity still pervade. Is there a better name for the tax? Maybe a “junk food tax”?

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  1. Apicius
    This is EXACTLY why I oppose taxing food...regardless if it's sugar, soda, fat, salt or whatever! Politicians and bureaucrats run on "opinions" and not facts/data. And when you add corporations with deep pockets who have the ability to influence the politicians/bureaucrats, the situation gets even worse.


    Reply: #2
  2. bill
    I agree.
  3. joe
    Who can now stop the govt. from imposing a fat tax on healthy fats such as lard, butter, coconut oil etc. to promote the consumption of "healthy" grains?
  4. Irfan
    Some sane articles appearing in newspapers now... this is from Today's 'Times of India's - one of the widely read daily in the country.

  5. Mark
    Hey Irfan, at least that article indicates a start in the right direction. Thanks for the share : D

    I agree with all of you who are against the name "fat tax." Not sure I agree with taxing any kind of food, good or bad....taxes are just money grabs and are not going to stop people from eating the crap they want to. Nonetheless, lets call it what it is, "junk food or high carb filler".

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