Obesity increased the government's tension, high sugar and fat foods may be taxed

Obesity increased the government’s tension, high sugar and fat foods may be taxed

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new Delhi. The ever-increasing obesity has not only increased the concern of the people, but has also given tension to the government. To control the increasing obesity in the country, the government’s think tank NITI Aayog is considering imposing a tax on foods high in sugar, fat and salt. Along with this, a proposal to take steps like ‘front-of-the-pack labelling’ is being considered.

Front-of-the-pack labeling (FOPL) helps consumers identify products with high sugar, salt and fat. NITI Aayog’s annual report for 2021-22 states that such steps are being considered to tackle the growing problem of obesity among the country’s population. The report said that the problem of overweight and obesity among children, adolescents and women is increasing continuously in India.

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Preparations are underway to overcome obesity
The report said that on June 24, 2021, a consultation was organized at the national level under the chairmanship of Member (Health) of NITI Aayog to save mothers, adolescents and children from obesity. It was told that NITI Aayog is working in this direction in collaboration with the Institute of Economic Development (IEG) and the Public Health Organization of India (PHFI). Through this, the steps to be taken are being identified on the basis of available evidence.

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so much tax now
NITI Aayog’s measures include front-of-pack labeling, marketing of HFSS (high sugar, salt and fat content) products, advertisements, increasing tax on products with added sugar, fat and salt. Non-branded namkeen, bhujia, vegetables, chips and snacks attract 5 per cent GST. The rate of GST for branded and packaged products is 12 per cent.

fast growing obesity
According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) 2019-20, the number of obese women has increased to 24 percent. In 2015-16, the number of such women was 20.6%. In the case of men, this figure has increased to 22.9 percent. In 2015-16, the number of obese men was 18.4%.

Preparations to build hyperloop system, government will not invest
The NITI Aayog report states that an expert committee under the chairmanship of VK Saraswat, member of the commission, has held four meetings to study the technical and commercial practice of the hyperloop system. Sub-committees have also been formed, which have suggested that the private sector should be allowed to build, own and operate the Hyperloop system. The government should only ‘facilitate’ certification, permissions, tax benefits and land (if possible) etc. The sub-committees also said that the government will not invest in it and private players will take the full risk.

Tags:, Niti Aayog, Obesity

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