Read more: Public consultation could introduce sugar advertising crackdown Oxford Economics said this "apparently small" average impact "reflects that customers may switch their consumption towards fruit juices and milk, which do not fall within the scope of the levy, but nonetheless contain naturally-occurring sugars". Gavin Partington, director general of the British Soft Drinks Association, said:
Post-Brexit, securing investment and jobs is more important than ever. This research shows the soft drinks tax is not only ineffective in fighting obesity but will come at a significant price for the economy, costing thousands of jobs. As an industry we recognise that obesity must be tackled which is why we have invested heavily in reformulating drinks. Since 2012 this has led to a 16 per cent reduction in sugar intake from soft drinks. The tax is therefore unnecessary and harmful to our economy.A spokesperson for the Treasury said: "The soft drinks industry levy is a major step forward in our effort to tackle childhood obesity, treating obesity and its consequences costs the NHS £1.5bn every year. "Health experts agree there is a specific problem with sugar-laden fizzy drinks that must be addressed. The levy encourages producers to take reasonable steps to reduce added sugar levels in their drinks. "If they do, they won’t have to pay the levy. We know that diet and sugar free versions of drinks can be profitable to produce, as these drinks are often cheaper for businesses to make. We have also given producers two years before implementation so they have time to reformulate their products."