Kerala’s ‘fat tax’ wakes up nation

Recently, Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Issac has imposed a 14.5% tax on pizzas, burgers, and pastas served in branded restaurants.

The imposition of tax had put the food industry in fix, calling for a review of the ‘fat tax’ saying it “would adversely affect growth of the quick service restaurant segment of the food industry and might set a similar trend for other segments as well’.

But many opines the ‘fat tax’ introduced by the state should turn out to be a deterrent for the food industry, since the childhood obesity has now reached serious proportion globally. One of the prime reasons for the rise in sales of junk food is its affordable prices.

The state should display its responsibility by controlling the food industry attempts to play havoc with human health. The United State’s National Centre for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) estimates more than 22 million children to be affected worldwide.

Obesity is fast becoming a health hazard at an alarming rate, leading to the explosion of lifestyle diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and blood pressure.

Kerala’s ‘fat tax’ should have grabbed the attention of the nation towards the need to take controlling measures to curb the growing threat of diabetes and other lifestyle diseases. Fat tax should be accompanied by consumer awareness campaigns.

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