“Junk food tax” eyed to raise funds for COVID-19 efforts

  • Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said junk foods may be included in the sin tax to help raise funds
  • He said junk foods have no nutritional value and poses a health risk to the youth
  • The National Tax Research Center (NTRC) had earlier pushed for the imposition of tax in junk foods to help ward off overconsumption of unhealthy foods among Filipinos

Some senators are eyeing the possibility of imposing a new tax scheme that will include junk foods to help raise funds for the government’s efforts against the spread of COVID-19.

Image by Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian via Facebook page

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, vice chairman of the Senate committee on economic affairs, said junk foods have zero nutritional content and only poses a health risk to the youth. He said they may look into the possibility of including junk foods in the revised sin tax.

“The other possible sin tax that the government may possibly look at is from junk food, which has zero nutritional value and targets the youth. It has been proven that junk food causes obesity and other heart ailments,” he said.

Last February, the Department of Finance reported that excise tax collections from products such as tobacco, alcohol and sweetened beverages have raised a total of P269.1 billion in revenues in 2019.

The state-run National Tax Research Center (NTRC) had earlier pushed for the imposition of tax in junk foods to help ward off the youth from consuming too much of it. In their feasibility study that focused on imposing junk food tax in the Philippines, they shared that Filipinos continuously consume junk foods despite its health hazard.

Image by Insights Philippines

“Overconsumption of junk foods causes harm to the body. However, their savory taste and inexpensiveness drive Filipinos to continuously consume these unhealthy products,” NTRC said in their study.

The NTRC noted that following foods and beverages are considered junk foods: Fast food, burger, fries, fried chicken, hotdog, pasta and pizza, deep-fried and salty snacks; sugary desserts and sweets, and soft drinks.

Source :

Philstar, Facebook , Inquirer