POSTED: April 01 2016


Denplan, the UK’s leading dental payment plan provider, has welcomed the recent announcement of a tax on the UK sugary soft drinks industry. Denplan’s Deputy Chief Dental Officer, Dr Henry Clover, commented: “We’re pleased that the Government has listened to the scientific evidence and advice from various campaign groups, as well as the wishes of thousands of members of the general public, and taken appropriate action to implement a levy on the production of sugary soft drinks – a leading factor of obesity, type 2 diabetes and tooth decay.

“While this is no silver bullet, it is a very significant and welcome step in the right direction to changing consumer sugar habits in the UK, and in ultimately trying to tackle the associated oral health and overall health risks of a diet high in processed sugar.”

Coming into effect by April 2018, the tax will see manufacturers of sugary soft drinks levied for the quantity of sugar in their products. A lower band of tax will apply to manufacturers of drinks that contain total sugar content above 5g per 100ml, and a second, higher band for drinks with more than 8g per 100ml.

“There are a couple of fundamental outcomes we hope will happen as a result of the sugar tax,” says Henry. “However, these have been assumed and are by no means guaranteed.

“Firstly, it is hoped that the manufacturers will take action over the next two years to adapt their recipes and reduce the overall sugar content of their drinks. Secondly, it is hoped that they will pass on any tax to the consumer to ultimately make products more expensive, so they are less likely to buy sugary drinks and make healthier lower sugar choices.

“However, there is a danger that not every manufacturer of sugary soft drinks will do this. There is a chance that they try to absorb the costs by finding cheaper ways to make their products by squeezing suppliers and sourcing cheaper ingredients. That’s why we’d like the Government to closely monitor consumer buying habits and consider introducing a tax directly on the consumer at the point of purchase, if the industry tax does not prove effective.”