All Energy Drinks Aren’t Made the Same
Despite the overwhelming popularity of energy drinks, the Mexican Congress has yet to chummy up. In an landslide vote, 436 to 1, Mexico’s lower house voted to impose a 25% tax on all energy drinks.
The government is taking this stance because of Mexico’s ongoing health issues. As The Economist put it, “Mexico now enjoys two important characteristics of rich countries. Unfortunately, they are obesity and diabetes.” The government’s priorities now revolve around promoting healthy eating and drinking.
Henry Mance of the Financial Times writes:
“Mexican legislators cited energy drinks for causing hypertension, headaches, vomiting and other problems. But they evidently see a tax as preferable to a ban, with good fiscal reason. Energy drinks are booming in the country – sales grew by over 100 per cent a year between 2005 and 2007 to 60m cans – but have remained free from sales tax. The market is dominated by the global leader Red Bull; smaller players include Gladiator, produced by Coca-Cola.”
The question remains, is it fair that all energy drinks are taxed just because the majority of them are horrible for you? I would hate to see BAZI being regulated in the same manner. Is this a case of energy drink bigotry? Or is this just a great step toward promoting consumer health?
There needs to be a set of standards that define energy drinks into sub categories. Some authoritative body needs to separate the over-caffeinated, sugary, artificial energy drinks from BAZI. Otherwise there will never be a monumental shift from consuming unhealthy energy drinks to healthy ones.
Perhaps a good start would be to just tax the energy drinks with warning labels!