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Price increase on sugar drinks may show decrease in sales

Posted on Jan 17, 2014 by Maggie LaBarbera

New study is showing that increasing the cost of sugary drinks may actually be decreasing sales.

A study conducted by Harvard University studied the impact of increasing the cost of sugary drinks by one cent per ounce.

Sugary drinks were drinks that had 150 calories or more per container and consisted mostly of soda, lemonade, whole chocolate milk and some juices.  These drinks were increased in price while the price of drinks with less than 150 calories and zero calorie drinks were left the same.

Result:  a 16% decline in sales of sugary drinks

In another study, the researchers changed the way drinks were displayed.  Basically, they grouped drinks by calorie ranges.

Result:  high calorie drinks had an 11% decline

This is an ongoing debate and lots of emotionally charged viewpoints from both industry and consumers.  I don't know if we should add taxes onto higher calorie food items.  

But I think it would be great if we could make healthier foods more affordable and place the same amount of marketing muscle behind it.  When the high calorie foods promote their foods it's called marketing.  And it visually appealing and reaches into our hearts and souls to encourage us to associate positive images with their foods.

When the healthy foods are promoted, it's called education.  It often comes across boring and "preachy".  ;-(

I once said to a representative of large grocery chain, what if we use our nutrition minded characters in the produce section to make the area fun and very kid friendly to promote healthy foods?  Make it more like the cereal aisle.  An area of the grocery store kids want to go to.  I was quickly dismissed.





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