Bemused by post-sugar tax pricing

I know I’ve banged on about sugar reduction on more than one occasion over the past few weeks, and the huge strides made by the soft drinks industry with regards to reformulation in a bid to avoid the so-called Soft Drinks Industry Levy.

So forgive me if I seem a little confused right now, particularly when it comes to pricing post-sugar tax.

Taking ‘full fat’ Coca-Cola as an example, one major UK retailer is now selling a 350ml bottle for the price of a pre-levy 500ml bottle. As I’m used to buying a 500ml bottle, 350ml leaves me feeling rather short-changed (literally). So I buy two, albeit reluctantly, as I don’t really want 700ml of the stuff. Neither, however, do I want to go thirsty.

Therefore, when I went into a local independent retailer recently to buy a 500ml bottle of Coca-Cola (again, for the same price as a 350ml bottle from the national retailer) and realised I could buy a litre (1000ml) for just 14p more than a 500ml measure, guess what I did? Yup, I ended up buying twice the amount I wanted – because it worked out far cheaper pro-rata. And in case you’re wondering, the price for both was the RRP printed on the label (and so not dictated by the guy in the corner shop).

It’s a rather bemusing scenario and one which, if replicated in other retail outlets across the UK, rather makes a mockery of the intended consequences of taxing sugar-rich drinks.

I was never convinced the levy would have the desired effect on either waistlines or dental health and, bearing in mind my own experiences, have no reason to change my mind.

So maybe it’s my drink I need to change. Anyone for Prosecco?

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