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Childhood obesity is nothing less than a public health emergency

The chair of the health select committee says the government must get its new strategy right

By Sarah Wollaston  

When George Osborne announced the sugary drinks levy in 2016, contrary to the predictions of his critics, it was widely welcomed. Manufacturers were given time to prepare and, by the point it came into force in April this year, it had already driven significant reductions in the sugar levels of fizzy drinks.

Far from being a regressive tax, the money collected was earmarked for schools and sports (it has been so successful in lowering sugar that less has been collected than originally anticipated). Where retailers do decide to pass on a price differential at the…

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