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Jamie Oliver’s Proposal: Sugar Taxes To Fund Free School Meals

The refrigerator on New Year’s Eve is stuffed with tempting treats and bottles of bubbly; all stocked away for the party later that evening. These indulgences monopolize the festive period’s eatery. But it is with the devil that lays these festive treats, also known as the ‘sugar tax.’ Amongst these celebrations, it is time to reflect upon the impacts such gratifications have upon oneself and the sugar tax in society.

This article will draw upon (Chef) Jamie Oliver’s proposals for using a sugar tax.

Jamie Oliver has suggested that during the cost of living crisis that plagues Britain, the Government should use the profit generated from sugar tax to fund free school meals, according to BBC News Oliver states that “if you look at the money raised from the sugary drinks tax, it's not far off what's needed [to fund free healthy school meals].”

With Oliver’s focus on healthy school meals, this newly proposed usage of the sugar tax would ensure children’s diets are cleaner.  The House of Commons Library found that children living in more deprived and poorer areas are more likely to be obese. For example, in 2020/2021 31.5% of children ages 10 -11 in deprived areas are obese. Therefore, with these staggering statistics calling for a change in health, Oliver’s suggestion is warmly welcomed.

Furthermore, on, Oliver discusses the requirements needed to receive free school meals. Current data dictates that children aged 4 -16 are only eligible for free school meals if they live in a household that earns less than £7,400 per year. It is noteworthy that, so far, this does not necessarily include those children who live in a household supported by Universal Credit. The BBC estimates that in England, 800,000 children theoretically should be entitled to free school meals.

In conclusion, health–obssessed chef Jamie Oliver has identified an issue in young people’s health and has proposed using the sugar tax to fund free healthy school meals for those who need them. In a cost of living crisis, this has been a prudent suggestion to use the country's resources efficiently and well. Moreover from Oliver’s suggestion, BBC News has reported that "Over a third of pupils in England currently receive free school meals in education settings, and we have just announced a further investment in the National School Breakfast Programme, extending the program for another year backed by up to £30m."

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Tags: Tax United Kingdom Cost of Living Crisis Sugar


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