Budget 2016: Sugar Tax Graph Shows How People Can Drink More Sugar But Pay Less Tax

Pass the coke
Darren Staples/PA Wire

George Osborne used his Budget on Wednesday to announce a tax on fizzy drinks in an attempt to cut down the amount of sugar children eat and drink.

But this graph from the respected Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) economics think-tank reveals how people will actually be able to pay less tax by consuming more sugar.

Osborne's tax is designed so it is levied per litre of drink. The IFS' Kate Smith said: "If you really, really like sugar you could therefore choose products in such a way as to consume exactly the same or even more sugar but pay less tax. In this case by consuming two litres of Sainsbury's orange energy drink rathe than two litres of Coca Cola".

  • 3 litres Coca Cola: 318 grams of sugar, 72p of tax

  • 2 litres Sainsbury’s Orange Energy Drink: 318 grams of sugar, 48p of tax

Smith also said even thought the sugar tax may be a good idea, it was "quite likely" people would simply switch to consuming other products that were high in sugar that were not subject to the new levy.

She added there might also be a boom in "cross border shopping and illicit trade".

Osborne's Budget will lead to an extra year of austerity and "lower wages and living standards", the IFS also said today.

The think-tank also attacked the chancellor for being "disingenuous" in claiming the low paid would not pay tax.