Food & Drink

B.C. Charging 7% Tax on Sugary Carbonated Drinks Effective July 1

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  • Jul 6th, 2020 10:33 am
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Aug 19, 2010
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B.C. Charging 7% Tax on Sugary Carbonated Drinks Effective July 1

Carbonated beverages – Carbonated beverages that contain sugar, natural sweeteners or artificial sweeteners will no longer qualify for the exemption for food products for human consumption at a future date to be determined. PST will also apply to all beverages that are dispensed through soda fountains, soda guns or similar equipment, along with all beverages dispensed through vending machines (except vending machines wholly dedicated to dispensing beverages other than sweetened carbonated beverages, e.g., coffee or water machines) at a future date to be determined.

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Deal Expert
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Jul 30, 2007
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Will those tax $ go into the health system or is it just another tax grab Grinning Face With Smiling Eyes
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Sep 21, 2017
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Vancouver
The dumb thing is things like Arizona iced tea or sunny d are not subject to the tax even tho they have a large amount of sugars because the tax is only for carbonated drinks. I also really don't see the rationale to tax diet drinks either. Seems like a cash grab to me.
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Apr 25, 2001
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Good reason to drink less pop. Tap water is always a good option.
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Nov 13, 2010
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Anything to discourage sugary drinks is good, even if it appears to be like a cashgrab
Write letter to them to include other sugary drinks as well
Too much diabetes and other health issues from these drinks and processed foods
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Sep 14, 2012
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Not sure how it works in BC but in Quebec, carbonated (sugary) drinks or soft drinks are taxed GST & PST and are taxed the same way that something like potato chips or chocolate bars are taxed.

Certain municipalities (ex: Montreal) are talking about adding an additional tax to soft drinks or fast food.

I'm against any additional taxes at checkout on any item. If it is incorporated into the sticker price, I generally have less of an issue with it (like gasoline, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.)

I also think it sets a bad precedence since today it might be soft drinks since they are unhealthy but maybe in a few years, it might be red meat or lobster due to the high cholesterol content.
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May 30, 2010
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apnayloags wrote: Anything to discourage sugary drinks is good, even if it appears to be like a cashgrab
Consuming less sugar? Good
Taxing based on food source of said sugar? Dubious
apnayloags wrote: Write letter to them to include other sugary drinks as well
Too much diabetes and other health issues from these drinks and processed foods
Why, where is the personal responsibility for each to look after their own health? Sugar based drinks are obviously ladden with sugar. Everyone should know this by now.

Regulate the food producers and manufacturers to stop using/hiding sugars under their various names for a start. Heck, align health policy with food safety, labeling and agricultural policies for a start. Increased use of high fructose corn syrup is a direct result of using tax dollars to subsidize corn farmers, that then get loaded into the food supply chain. More taxes just provides them more money to redistribute.
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Oct 7, 2007
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When has taxing something really fixed the issue?

I don't buy these types of beverages so it makes no difference to me BUT I do wonder about whether the underlying motives of such taxes and whether they really are trying to help people. Interesting that we also tax tobacco products in B.C. which I don't have a problem with either BUT we are giving more and more narcotics out for free to those who are opioid-addicted.
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Jun 19, 2001
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The bizarre thing is they weren't taxed until now. What we really need is an extra tax on them, and other junk food including animal products

"When has taxing something really fixed the issue?"

If it s high enough. Look at tobacco consumption "ncreasing the price of tobacco through higher taxes is the single most effective way to encourage tobacco users to quit and prevent children from starting to smoke. "https://www.who.int/tobacco/mpower/raise_taxes/en/

and we have the guy below thinking he knows more then the WHO :rolleyes:
Last edited by zoro69 on Jul 2nd, 2020 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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May 30, 2010
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zoro69 wrote: The bizarre thing is they weren't taxed until now. What we really need is an extra tax on them, and other junk food including animal products

"When has taxing something really fixed the issue?"

If it s high enough. Look at tobacco consumption "ncreasing the price of tobacco through higher taxes is the single most effective way to encourage tobacco users to quit and prevent children from starting to smoke. "https://www.who.int/tobacco/mpower/raise_taxes/en/
Higher taxes are not going to have the kids, teenagers and most young adults shift their drinking habits. Just look at how it evolved as it shifts from soft drinks, to energy drinks, and then to caffeine spiked energy drinks, and alcohol based "soft drinks" such hard lemonade, coolers and pre-mixed cocktails.

As far as tobacco and taxes go, looking at the Canadian marketplace, all tobacco taxes did and do is encourage the grey and black market for them. It's really access restrictions that has helped curb availability and a the ban on marketing that makes it so smoking is no longer cool with a larger segment of teenagers.

Tobacco use has grown in most Asian and third world countries, as big tobacco has shifted their market there. This has also shifted the landscape of the farmland that used to grow food crop, that now grow more tobacco, even at low prices due to steady income from the big companies.
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May 22, 2003
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jackrabbit000 wrote: Or buy a Sodastream and make your own. >> just don’t buy the cream soda syrup.
Okay this is ridiculous. Looks like I will finally buy a soda stream. I've been buying diet soda.
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Oct 20, 2005
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Bought 2L Coca Cola at Nofrills and was not charged the 7% PST yesterday July 1st, 2020.
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Jun 27, 2006
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We can probably expect other provinces to look to introduce similar approaches to address the financial impacts of COVID, opps to help support healthier choices.
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Oct 7, 2007
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Mike^ wrote: Bought 2L Coca Cola at Nofrills and was not charged the 7% PST yesterday July 1st, 2020.
Should have loaded up. LOL
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May 30, 2010
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All soft drinks already include HST in Ontario at the grocery store and restaurants. The only exemption is the under $4 bill at the coffee shops where only the GST applies.
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Jan 9, 2011
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Why are non-carbonated sugary drinks exempt? Why demonize harmless carbonation? Even back in the 80s, my high school replaced all of carbonated Pepsi products in the vending machines with Gatorade and Lipton Ice Tea. That was dumb then, still dumb now.
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Oct 7, 2007
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Kiraly wrote: Why are non-carbonated sugary drinks exempt? Why demonize harmless carbonation? Even back in the 80s, my high school replaced all of carbonated Pepsi products in the vending machines with Gatorade and Lipton Ice Tea. That was dumb then, still dumb now.
Good question. A tax without a sincere purpose is just as meaningless as the desired outcome.

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