A state in southern India has become the first in the country to impose a “fat tax” on fast food, according to VOA News.
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With obesity levels among India’s middle class steadily on the rise, officials in the state of Kerala imposed a 14.5 percent “fat tax” on hamburgers, pizza and other fast food.
More States to Follow?
Other states could follow Kerala’s lead. An official in the central Gujarat state told the Times of India the state is considering a similar 14.5 percent tax, VOA reported.
Over the past 15 years, the fast food market in India has seen steady growth, with newcomers like Johnny Rockets, Burger King, Wendy’s and Barcelos competing with established chains like McDonald’s, Pizza Hut and KFC, for a piece of India’s pie. Consequently, healthy food is falling out of fashion.
The Tax Controversey
As expected, the tax isn’t without controversy, with some calling it a tax grab, while officials in Kerala say the overall amount collected will be small.
Adding to the controversy is the fact that the “fat tax” will not be applied to local street vendor food, which in many cases is high in fat and calories.
VIA – VOA