A number of health experts have urged the government to consider introducing a sugar tax, after a Public Health England report recommended the measure. Reacting to the report, Professor Sheila Hollins, chairwoman of the British Medical Association's board of science said: "Doctors are increasingly concerned about the impact of poor diet, which is responsible for up to 70,000 deaths a year, and has the greatest impact on the NHS budget, costing £6 billion annually.
"We urge the Government to give real and urgent consideration to Public Health England's recommendations including restricting the marketing of high-sugar products, reducing promotions of sugary food and drink, and introducing a 10-20% sugar tax," she said.
Julian Hamilton-Shield, professor of diabetes and etabolic endocrinology at the University of Bristol, said: "As a doctor who has spent over 15 years treating morbid childhood obesity and its consequences, I welcome this report that targets a series of levers designed to reduce sugar consumption in the whole population but more importantly children.
"I especially welcome the suggestions for reducing price promotion of sugar-containing foods, reduced targeting of children through advertising and the suggested taxation of sugar-containing beverages which should be at the higher level suggested of 20%."
The numbers behind child health in England are frightening - no wonder the Prime Minister is being urged to act.
More than 70% of senior health professionals would support a tax on sugary foods and drinks, according to an ITV News poll.
A 20 per cent 'sugar tax' should be imposed on food and drink in a bid to help tackle the country's obesity and health crisis, a report says