Denmark's Fat Tax Aims To Make Obesity Expensive

Obese people put a huge money drain on medical establishments and now Denmark is attempting to stop that drain and help their citizens become healthy. Officials in Denmark have rolled out a "fat tax" which will force customers to pay more for fatty foods.

Under the new tax the cost of food will be based directly off the fat content contained in that food:

Denmark has imposed a "fat tax" on fatty foods in an effort to convince Danes to eat healthier. The tax is a complex one, in which rates will correspond with the percentage of fat in a product. The value of the tax is about $3.00 for every 2.2 pounds of saturated fat.

For example, a burger will increase in price by about $0.15, and a small package of butter could cost around $0.40 more under the new plan.

The tax was approved by large majority in a parliament in March as a move to help increase the average life expectancy of Danes - which has fallen below the international average of 79 years - by three years over the next 10 years.

While the law itself could help with obesity in the area some critics have called the country's officials hypocritical since they are some of the world's largest producers of butter, cheese and bacon.

The announcement comes just after France banned ketchup from elementary and university cafeterias in an attempt to lessen the effects of fatty condiments.

The United States has also been considering a tax on soda beverages which could be widened at a later time of the Danish fat tax proves to be a success.