Using fat tax to change food consumption behaviour

Using tax as a tool to alter consumer food preferences has been recommended by the World Health Organisation. Mexico provides us with proof that levying additional taxes on non-essential food items that are rich in fat or calories can effectively alter food choices. The country witnessed a 5.1 per cent dip in consumption levels in … Continue reading Using fat tax to change food consumption behaviour


Let larger pictorial warnings stay

Nearly one million tobacco-related deaths take place in India every year, and in 2011, the total health expenditure burden from all diseases due to tobacco use amounted to more than Rs.1,00,000 crore, which is 12 per cent more than the combined State and Central government expenditure on health in 2011-12. The revenue earned through tobacco … Continue reading Let larger pictorial warnings stay

Tobacco excise duty increase lowest in the last five years

The continuation of differential taxes based on filter or non-filter and four different tiers based on cigarette lengths defeats the very purpose of increased tobacco taxation The Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the excise duties on various tobacco products other than beedi were being increased by 10-15 per cent. This according to him was “to … Continue reading Tobacco excise duty increase lowest in the last five years

Sounding the smoke alarm on sale of tobacco to minors

Thanks to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015, tobacco companies in India may find it hard to lure children below the age of 18 into the tobacco habit. According to the Act, anyone who sells these products to underage children will face rigorous imprisonment up to seven years and a fine … Continue reading Sounding the smoke alarm on sale of tobacco to minors

A pictorial warning must shock

What is the connection between a scorpion, tobacco and cancer? Well, absolutely nothing. If any, it is the crab that is an international symbol of cancer. Yet, the previous government chose the scorpion as one of the pictorial warnings on tobacco products! Though the current controversy on pictorial warnings has finally boiled down to the … Continue reading A pictorial warning must shock

Editorial: Discouraging cigarette sales

f cigarettes in the loose, and raise the minimum age from 18 to 21 for the sale of tobacco products, clearly reflects the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s steely determination to wage an all-out war against tobacco consumption. These are commendable initiatives that would go a long way in preventing children from taking up … Continue reading Editorial: Discouraging cigarette sales

Editorial: Loosening tobacco’s deadly grip

A few months after steeply increasing taxes on tobacco products, the government has come up with another much-needed measure to contain tobacco consumption. Thanks to a recent amendment to the Cigarettes and other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labelling) Rules of 2008, pictorial warnings are all set to achieve the desired results. Beginning April 1, 2015, … Continue reading Editorial: Loosening tobacco’s deadly grip

Editorial: Sin tax and tobacco use

It is indeed noteworthy that Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has increased the specific excise duty on cigarettes in the range of 11 to 72 per cent and by 10 per cent on chewing tobacco. While the revenue generated from tobacco sale will increase substantially, the primary objective of reducing tobacco consumption may not be … Continue reading Editorial: Sin tax and tobacco use

Will tax hike reduce tobacco consumption in India?

The Union Health Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, recently said he “supports” higher taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products. But even if he were to substantially increase the tax rates, will it make cigarettes and other tobacco products very expensive and hence reduce consumption? In the case of India, as per the current taxation practices, … Continue reading Will tax hike reduce tobacco consumption in India?

Tobacco causes a huge health burden

That over 27 per cent of tobacco consumers in India fall in the 15-24 year age bracket amply demonstrates how successful the tobacco companies have been in continually enticing the vulnerable sections of the population into the suicidal practice. The addition of new customers every year even as thousands of patrons die annually ensures that … Continue reading Tobacco causes a huge health burden