Stop Subsidizing Obesity
OUR TAX DOLLARS HELP FUEL OBESITY EPIDEMIC—Since 1995, $18 billion has been given away in subsidies to Big Agribusinesses, this money gets used to produce common junk food ingredients, like high-fructose corn syrup. These giveaways are all the more absurd at a time when one-in-three kids is overweight or obese.
PUT JUNK FOOD SUBSIDIES ON A DIET
Almost anything you can think of would be a better use of our tax dollars than subsidizing the ingredients in junk food, but every year more than a billion taxpayer dollars do just that. Huge, profitable corporations, like Cargill and Monsanto, have pocketed $18 billion in the last 16 years and turned subsidized crops into junk food ingredients — including high fructose corn syrup.
These taxpayer giveaways are all the more absurd at a time when one-in-three kids is overweight or obese, and obesity-related diseases like diabetes are turning into an epidemic.
Many of these wasteful subsidies are set to expire this year, but industry lobbyists are urging Congress to keep them. In 2008 alone, big agribusinesses spent $200 million on lobbying and campaign contributions.
No one in Congress wants to be seen standing up for taxpayer giveaways to junk food. Cutting wasteful spending while attacking childhood obesity could be the perfect storm we need to push past the junk food industry.
Obesity Quick Facts:
- High-fructose diets impair learning and memory.
- For each additional can of soda drunk daily, the odds of a child becoming obese increases by about 60%.
- Childhood obesity has quadrupled in the last 40 years.
- Drinking one or two sugary drinks per day increases the risk for type 2 diabetes by 25%.
- Once an adult problem, diabetes associated with obesity is increasing among children.
Tools & Resources
Our Changing Relationship with Driving and the Implications for America’s FutureU.S. PIRG Education Fund
U.S. PIRG conducted a webinar with officials from 31 states on ways to improve online spending transparency
You Can Help
We have a chance to cut billions in junk food subsidies this year. Your support will help us do the research, advocacy and grassroots organizing to convince our elected officials to act.
Each year, our tax dollars pay for enough junk food additives to buy 8.5 two-liter bottles of soda for each person under 18. Help stop the subsidies for junk food.
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