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New research has been published about the effects of taxing soft drinks with the aim of reducing obesity rates. We speak to Jon Griffin from Kent Scientific Services, Adam Briggs from Oxford University and Gavin Partington of the British Soft Drinks Association
Health experts who have called for a 20% tax on sugary soft drinks say the move could raise more than £275 million each year for the treasury - around 8 pence per person, per week.
This saving "could be used to increase NHS funding during a period of budget restrictions or to subsidise foods with health benefits, such as fruit and vegetables," researchers from Oxford and Reading universities said.
Calls for a 20% tax hike on fizzy drinks have been met with skepticism by Cambridge University clinical biochemistry and medicine professor Sir Stephen O'Rahilly.
Doctors who have called on the Government to introduce a 20% tax on sugary drinks say 16 to 29-year-olds consume the most sugary drinks - an average of 300ml per day, compared to 60ml among those aged over 50.
A 20% tax on sugary drinks would cut the number of overweight people in the UK by 285,000 over 10 years, according to experts from Oxford and Reading universities.
A tax on the drinks, which the researchers say are linked to "ill health" and have "no beneficial nutrients", could reduce cut the number of people who are obese by 180,000 alone, according to the findings printed in British Medical Journal .