DENMARK: Danish firms criticise 'fat tax'

By Katie Smith | 7 October 2011

The Danish government introduced the tax on food high in saturated fat which applies to meats, including chicken and pork, cheese, butter, edible vegetable oil, margarine and other foods such as potato-based snacks

The Danish government introduced the tax on food high in saturated fat which applies to meats, including chicken and pork, cheese, butter, edible vegetable oil, margarine and other foods such as potato-based snacks

Denmark's food manufacturers have criticised the country's new fat tax, pointing to the financial impact of the levy and questioning whether it will encourage people to eat more healthily.

The Danish government introduced the tax on food high in saturated fat on Saturday (1 October). It affects products including chicken, pork, cheese, butter, edible vegetable oil and other foods such as potato-based snacks.

Danish dairy firm Bornholms Andeslmejeri has cut 20 to 25 products from its portfolio as a result of the tax.

Arla Foods, meanwhile, has not removed any products from sale although a spokesperson admitted the company's sales would be affected.

"We do anticipate a loss in annual revenue of up to DKK125m (US$22.4m) on the Danish market due to this tax," the spokesperson said.

The Danish government has claimed the levy will improve the health of the population. However, some in the food industry disagree.

Meat processor Tulip, which is part of Danish meat group Danish Crown, supplies products including bacon, cold meat and sausages.

A spokesperson said Tulip recognised that obesity is a problem in Europe and the company has a responsibility to make healthier products. However, the spokesperson said Tulip believes Danish companies will be less competitive and said the levy should be implemented on a European level.

Fodevarer, the country's food and drinks federation, meanwhile, said it also opposes the fat tax. Director Ole Linnet Juul, called the tax a "bureaucratic nightmare". He said: "I doubt this will change the habit of the consumer."

Juul added that the way to get people to eat healthy foods is to educate children in school and launch campaigns, not through taxes.

Sectors: Dairy, Health & wellness, Meat & poultry

Companies: Arla Foods, Danish Crown

View next/previous articles

Currently reading -

DENMARK: Danish firms criticise 'fat tax'

There are currently no comments on this article

Be the first to comment on this article

Related articles

UK: Tulip management in "bribe" claim over pay dispute

Unite the union has accused management at UK meat firm Tulip of "bribing" employees in an ongoing dispute over redundancy pay.

UK: Tulip staff to protest in redundancy dispute

Workers at UK meat firm Tulip plan to demonstrate at a plant set for closure over fears they could lose their redundancy pay.

In the spotlight - Likely sale of Dairy Crest's "crown jewels" surprises City

The news that Dairy Crest is mulling the future of St Hubert, its branded spreads business in France, has garnered a mixed reaction from the City.

Read more on this hot issue

Taxing fat

Denmark has introduced a levy on foods high in fat, prompting debate over whether such taxes really do help to improve people's heath and whether other countries should follow their lead.

Welcome to the home of food information, insight & intelligence

Not a member? Join here

Decrease font sizeDecrease font sizeDecrease font size Increase font sizeIncrease font sizeIncrease font size Comment on this article Email this to a friend Print this page