Meat tax! The latest sin tax proposal...
While some of the Chancellor’s Budget announcements have been almost universally welcomed (other than by annuity companies), others have subjected Gorgeous George, and his party to some ridicule, and spoof ads. But it could have been worse- imagine the uproar if he had implemented the latest tax idea from campaigners PETA. A meat tax.
That’s right. The cabbage-eating sorts consider meat the next “obvious culprit” for being the subject of a sin tax, such as those levied on cigarettes and alcohol in the name of public health. Of course, it is only health organisations who have criticised last week’s scrapping of the alcohol duty escalator and drop in beer duty given that it will, accidentally perhaps, also make brain-frying Tennent’s Super cheaper. What with that and whisky, Scots must be loving Westminster right about now…
But back to meat tax. PETA managing director Ingrid Newkirk believes they have come up with “a practical, money-saving suggestion that would score highly on both the fiscal and the moral front” saying:
“Consumers already pay duty, or “sin”, taxes on cigarettes, alcohol and gasoline to help offset their health and environmental costs, yet although eating flesh and animal secretions is another unhealthy habit as well as a leading cause of climate change, it has so far escaped being taxed. Unfair! And unhelpful.”
Now. You might write this off as the deranged ramblings of someone suffering an iron deficiency, but Ingrid has actually found a similar proposed tax to support her point- a ruminant tax proposed by scientists writing in the journal Nature Climate Change. That’s right, the meat tax is apparently vindicated by the suggestion we should have a fart tax on cows to limit greenhouse gases.
Disappointingly for PETA, a meat tax is not on the cards, although discussion still rumbles over other food sin taxes, such as sugar or saturated fat tax to try and tax the lardy more than the wealthy. Still, PETA reassures us that we don’t have to wait for a meat tax, we can all become vegetarian, or preferably vegan, right now.
I’ll get my sprout.