Nearly three in four Californians support taxing sugary beverages if the money gained from the tax is used in school nutrition and physical activity programs, according to the results of a new Field Poll.
However over a half (53 percent) of those polled initially opposed any tax on sugary drinks despite a large majority of the Californians believing that such beverages are a major cause of obesity. Around 1,184 people in California took part in the survey back in October followed by an additional 156 people from Richmond in November.
Dr. Anthony Iton, who is the senior vice president of healthy communities with the California Endowment which had funded the poll, said that while the public is still not supportive of a tax on sugary sodas, earmarking the funds generated towards improving the public health could go a long way in generating the required support.
"The public is still not there on a general soda tax. But when you earmark it, when you say the proceeds will go to things like trying to improve the food environment or enhance recreational activities, then large majorities across the board are supportive of that policy", Dr Iton said.