High-sodium food products likely to be slapped with ‘salinity’ tax: Kasikorn centre


The government expects to collect up to THB88 billion of ‘salinity’ tax in 2022 from high-sodium food products to promote a healthy lifestyle, the Kasikorn Research Centre said on Wednesday after a study.

Citing research by the Thai Health Promotion Foundation and the Nephrology Society of Thailand, the centre said the average daily consumption rate of sodium stands at 3,636 milligrams, or 1.8 teaspoons of salt per person, which is two times higher than the World Health Organisation’s recommendation of 2,000 milligrams, or 1 teaspoon.

Therefore, the centre said, the government is preparing salinity tax collection guidelines for next year based on the amount of sodium in food products. 

The expected THB88-billion tax in 2022 would be collected from 18 per cent of the total ready-to-eat and instant food products on the market.

The centre predicted that the products most likely to be slapped with the tax would be instant noodles, frozen food, instant porridge, ready-to-eat meals, canned fish and snacks in that order.

It also said the state would use a ladder tax rate based on sodium content, which is similar to the sweet-beverage taxation. 
Meanwhile, the centre suggested that the salinity tax should be collected directly from manufacturers with an appropriate duration for producers to adjust.

It urged the government to educate the public on the risks of consuming a high amount of sodium, while promoting a healthy lifestyle with proper measures besides collecting the salinity tax.

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