L'Association des embouteilleurs de boissons gazeuses du Québec's statement in response to the Coalition Poids - Education not Taxation to Combat the Complex Issue of Obesity

MONTREAL, Feb. 19, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - L'Association des embouteilleurs de boissons gazeuses du Québec (AEBGQ) agrees that obesity is a complex health issue.  We feel that the solutions to this issue lie in education and in offering Quebecers the tools and products necessary to help make informed decisions and choices.  We do not agree that the solution lies in advocating the punitive taxation of specific products such as beverages.

No one single food or beverage can be held responsible for weight gain.  In fact, the Canadian government looked at fats, carbohydrates, protein and fibre in the diet and concluded that "it is not what you eat, but rather, how much - the total number of calories consumed - that significantly contributes to obesity".1

"L'Association des embouteilleurs de boissons gazeuses du Québec feels that focusing on a declining source of calories in Quebecers diets is a misguided approach that distracts from meaningful solutions that promote healthier diets overall, as well as increased physical activity," said Martin Pierre Pelletier, spokesperson for l'Association des embouteilleurs de boissons gazeuses du Québec.  "Given that the beverage industry offers a wide variety of hydration options including no and low calorie beverages, we feel that this is a tax grab disguised as a public policy recommendation."

The 2012 Statistics Canada report, Food Statistics2 identified that between 1999 and 2011 consumption of soft drinks in Canada decreased by 32% yet at the same time obesity rates in Canada continued to rise.

Research shows that 89% of Quebecers feel that the government should be educating the public about changing their behaviour, not taxing them3. The AEBGQ and its members have undertaken a number of concrete and meaningful actions to responsibly market their products and help promote healthy active lifestyles.

The AEBGQ is the provincial trade association representing the broad spectrum of brands and companies that manufacture and distribute the majority of non-alcoholic beverages consumed in Quebec.

1 Langlois K, Garriguet D, and Findlay L.  Diet composition and obesity among Canadian adults; Health Reports (Statistics Canada), October 2009, Cat.no.82-003-X
2 Source: Statistics Canada. Table 002-0011 - Food available in Canada, annual (kilograms per person, per year unless otherwise noted), CANSIM (database). http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a26;jsessionid=240926578C8E6E0BA730E56D476295B9?id=0020011&pattern=&csid=&retrLang=eng&lang=eng
3 Ipsos Research, January 2011 for Refreshments Canada


SOURCE: Association des embouteilleurs de boissons gazeuses du Québec

For further information:

Martin Pierre Pelletier
613 797-7200

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