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Chile's 2014 sugar-sweetened beverage tax and changes in prices and purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages: An observational study in an urban environment.
PLoS Med. 2018 07; 15(7):e1002597.PM

Abstract

BACKGROUND

On October 1, 2014, the Chilean government modified its previous sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) tax, increasing the tax rate from 13% to 18% on industrialized beverages with high levels of sugar (H-SSBs) (greater than 6.25 grams [g] sugar/100 milliliters [mL]) and decreasing the tax rate from 13% to 10% on industrialized beverages with low or no sugar (L-SSBs) (less than 6.25 g sugar/100 mL). This study examines changes in beverage prices and household beverage purchases following the implementation of the tax reform.

METHODS AND FINDINGS

We used longitudinal data collected between January 1, 2013, and December 31, 2015, from 2,000 households. We defined the pretax period as January 1, 2013, to September 30, 2014, and the posttax period as October 1, 2014, to December 31, 2015. We conducted a pre-post analysis for changes in prices and purchases, with the latter examined by volume and calories. We compared posttax changes in prices and purchases to a counterfactual, defined as what would have been expected in the posttax period based on pretax trends. All results are stated as comparisons to this counterfactual. We linked beverages at the bar code level to nutrition facts panel data collected by a team of Chilean nutritionists who categorized them by taxation level and beverage subcategory, which included carbonated and noncarbonated H-SSBs and concentrated, ready-to-drink L-SSBs and untaxed beverages. We reconstituted concentrated beverages and analyzed all beverages using as-consumed volumes and calories. Posttax monthly prices of H-SSBs increased, but these changes were small. Prices of carbonated H-SSBs increased by 2.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.0%-3.0%), while those of noncarbonated H-SSBs increased by 3.9% (95% CI 1.6%-6.2%). Prices of L-SSB concentrates decreased after the tax by 6.7% (95% CI -8.2%--4.6%), and prices of ready-to-drink L-SSBs increased by 1.5% (95% CI 0.3%-2.7%). Households decreased monthly per capita purchases of H-SSBs by 3.4% by volume (95% CI -5.9%--0.9%) and 4.0% by calories (95% CI -6.3%--1.9%), and this change was greater among high socioeconomic status (SES) households. The volume of household purchases of L-SSBs increased 10.7% (95% CI 7.5%-13.9%), while that of untaxed beverage purchases decreased by 3.1% (95% CI -5.1%--1.1%). The main limitation of this study was that there was no control group, so we were unable to assess the causal impact of the tax.

CONCLUSIONS

The modifications of Chile's SSB tax were small, and observed changes in prices and purchases of beverages after the tax were also small. Our results are consistent with previous evidence indicating that small increases in SSB taxes are unlikely to promote large enough changes in SSB purchases to reduce obesity and noncommunicable diseases (NCDs).

Authors+Show Affiliations

Instituto de Nutrición y Tecnología de Alimentos, Universidad de Chile, Santiago, Chile. Department of Health Policy and Management, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States of America.Instituto de Nutrición y Tecnología de Alimentos, Universidad de Chile, Santiago, Chile.Instituto de Nutrición y Tecnología de Alimentos, Universidad de Chile, Santiago, Chile.Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Negocios, Universidad Central de Chile, Santiago, Chile.Carolina Population Center and Department of Nutrition, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States of America.Carolina Population Center and Department of Nutrition, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States of America.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Observational Study
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

29969444

Citation

Caro, Juan Carlos, et al. "Chile's 2014 Sugar-sweetened Beverage Tax and Changes in Prices and Purchases of Sugar-sweetened Beverages: an Observational Study in an Urban Environment." PLoS Medicine, vol. 15, no. 7, 2018, pp. e1002597.
Caro JC, Corvalán C, Reyes M, et al. Chile's 2014 sugar-sweetened beverage tax and changes in prices and purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages: An observational study in an urban environment. PLoS Med. 2018;15(7):e1002597.
Caro, J. C., Corvalán, C., Reyes, M., Silva, A., Popkin, B., & Taillie, L. S. (2018). Chile's 2014 sugar-sweetened beverage tax and changes in prices and purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages: An observational study in an urban environment. PLoS Medicine, 15(7), e1002597. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1002597
Caro JC, et al. Chile's 2014 Sugar-sweetened Beverage Tax and Changes in Prices and Purchases of Sugar-sweetened Beverages: an Observational Study in an Urban Environment. PLoS Med. 2018;15(7):e1002597. PubMed PMID: 29969444.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Chile's 2014 sugar-sweetened beverage tax and changes in prices and purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages: An observational study in an urban environment. AU - Caro,Juan Carlos, AU - Corvalán,Camila, AU - Reyes,Marcela, AU - Silva,Andres, AU - Popkin,Barry, AU - Taillie,Lindsey Smith, Y1 - 2018/07/03/ PY - 2017/11/03/received PY - 2018/05/29/accepted PY - 2018/7/4/entrez PY - 2018/7/4/pubmed PY - 2019/4/10/medline SP - e1002597 EP - e1002597 JF - PLoS medicine JO - PLoS Med VL - 15 IS - 7 N2 - BACKGROUND: On October 1, 2014, the Chilean government modified its previous sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) tax, increasing the tax rate from 13% to 18% on industrialized beverages with high levels of sugar (H-SSBs) (greater than 6.25 grams [g] sugar/100 milliliters [mL]) and decreasing the tax rate from 13% to 10% on industrialized beverages with low or no sugar (L-SSBs) (less than 6.25 g sugar/100 mL). This study examines changes in beverage prices and household beverage purchases following the implementation of the tax reform. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We used longitudinal data collected between January 1, 2013, and December 31, 2015, from 2,000 households. We defined the pretax period as January 1, 2013, to September 30, 2014, and the posttax period as October 1, 2014, to December 31, 2015. We conducted a pre-post analysis for changes in prices and purchases, with the latter examined by volume and calories. We compared posttax changes in prices and purchases to a counterfactual, defined as what would have been expected in the posttax period based on pretax trends. All results are stated as comparisons to this counterfactual. We linked beverages at the bar code level to nutrition facts panel data collected by a team of Chilean nutritionists who categorized them by taxation level and beverage subcategory, which included carbonated and noncarbonated H-SSBs and concentrated, ready-to-drink L-SSBs and untaxed beverages. We reconstituted concentrated beverages and analyzed all beverages using as-consumed volumes and calories. Posttax monthly prices of H-SSBs increased, but these changes were small. Prices of carbonated H-SSBs increased by 2.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.0%-3.0%), while those of noncarbonated H-SSBs increased by 3.9% (95% CI 1.6%-6.2%). Prices of L-SSB concentrates decreased after the tax by 6.7% (95% CI -8.2%--4.6%), and prices of ready-to-drink L-SSBs increased by 1.5% (95% CI 0.3%-2.7%). Households decreased monthly per capita purchases of H-SSBs by 3.4% by volume (95% CI -5.9%--0.9%) and 4.0% by calories (95% CI -6.3%--1.9%), and this change was greater among high socioeconomic status (SES) households. The volume of household purchases of L-SSBs increased 10.7% (95% CI 7.5%-13.9%), while that of untaxed beverage purchases decreased by 3.1% (95% CI -5.1%--1.1%). The main limitation of this study was that there was no control group, so we were unable to assess the causal impact of the tax. CONCLUSIONS: The modifications of Chile's SSB tax were small, and observed changes in prices and purchases of beverages after the tax were also small. Our results are consistent with previous evidence indicating that small increases in SSB taxes are unlikely to promote large enough changes in SSB purchases to reduce obesity and noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). SN - 1549-1676 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/29969444/Chile's_2014_sugar_sweetened_beverage_tax_and_changes_in_prices_and_purchases_of_sugar_sweetened_beverages:_An_observational_study_in_an_urban_environment_ L2 - https://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1002597 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -