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Incentive for healthier nutrition: abolition of VAT on fruit and vegetables
Again and again, demands are being made that demand higher taxation of unhealthy foods such as sugar or meat. However, it can also make sense to reduce or even cut taxes on healthy food. The consumer organization foodwatch is now calling for the abolition of VAT on fruit and vegetables.
Numerous scientific studies have been carried out in recent years, which have shown how important the right nutrition is for human health. Studies have shown that plant-based foods are particularly beneficial. Tax exemption for fruits and vegetables could help more people to use such foods.
Promote climate-friendly and healthy nutrition
Studies in recent years have shown that German fruit and vegetable consumption has stagnated. The plant-based diet is extremely important for health. Among other things, it is known that the higher the vegetable and fruit consumption, the lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
If such foods were cheaper, more people would probably use them more often. One measure to make fruit and vegetables cheaper is the elimination of VAT, which the consumer organization foodwatch is now demanding.
A diet with more plant-based foods and less meat and animal foods would not only be healthy, but would also protect the environment and the climate.
Meat consumption too high
"People eat less fruit and vegetables than recommended and more meat than is good for health, the environment and the climate," said foodwatch managing director Martin Rücker in a message.
"The federal government can implement the abolition of VAT on fruit and vegetables quickly and nationwide. This would make it easier for many people to eat healthy fruits and vegetables - and at the same time make a contribution to more environmentally and climate-friendly agricultural production, ”said the expert.
"As long as a head of broccoli costs more than a breaded pork schnitzel, something is going wrong in agricultural policy."
An older study from the USA also shows how useful it would be if plant products were cheaper. The researchers found that thousands of deaths a year could be avoided if fruit and vegetable prices were lowered. The results were published in the "Journal of the National Cancer Institute".
Germans eat too little vegetables
As explained in the foodwatch announcement, the reduced VAT rate of seven percent applies to both meat and fruit and vegetables in Germany. According to the information, meat consumption in Germany has been around 60 kg per person per year for years, with a slightly decreasing trend.
Experts such as the German Society for Nutrition (DGE) recommend eating only about 300 to 600 grams of sausage and meat per week and point out that most Germans in particular eat too little vegetables.
In addition, the production of meat and animal foods causes more climate damage than fruits and vegetables. (ad)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- foodwatch: Promote climate-friendly and healthy nutrition: foodwatch calls for the abolition of VAT on fruit and vegetables, (accessed: January 27, 2020), foodwatch
- Hsin-Chia Hung, Kaumudi J. Joshipura, Rui Jiang, Frank B. Hu, David Hunter, Stephanie A. Smith-Warner, Graham A. Colditz, Bernard Rosner, Donna Spiegelman, Walter C. Willett: Fruit and Vegetable Intake and Risk of Major Chronic Disease; in: Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI), (published: online: November 3, 2004 and: JNCI, Volume 96, Issue 21, Pages 1577–1584), Journal of the National Cancer Institute