Kerala: If you were fast food lover then there is big blow for you. In a first-of-its-kind move in the country, Kerala has introduced a ‘fat tax’ on the consumption of junk food items like pizzas and burgers sold through branded restaurants. In his budget speech, the state's Finance Minister said a fat tax of 14.5% would be imposed on branded restaurants selling food like pizzas, burgers, tacos, doughnuts, sandwiches, pasta, burger patty and bread-filling.
Fast-food chains like McDonalds, Dominos, Pizza Hut, Subway among others are likely to see a hit on their sales as they would be forced to up the prices and pass on the burden to consumers. The newly-elected LDF government in the state has imposed 14.5 percent tax on branded resturrants and resturant chians selling fast food.
Two studies conducted earlier in the state pointed towards rising obesity levels amongst children in the state. A 2010 study, which was conducted by VMS Bellary found that among high school students of Thiruvananthapuram’s city corporation, 12 percent were overweight while 6.3 percnt were obese.
The state government has also imposed 5 percent tax on packaged wheat products, packaged basmati rice and coconut oil. Disposable plastic glasses are also set to be costlier with a steep 20 percent tax imposed.