Sunday, July 24, 2011

Subsidize vegetables?

Mark Bittman has done it again! In a NY Times Op-Ed he suggests that we tax unhealthful foods (he suggests 2 cents per ounce for sweetened drinks and 50 cents for an order of fries!) and subsidize the production of healthy vegetables.  By selling dried legumes, whole grains and seasonal vegetables (everywhere--and thus solving the problem of food deserts that many urban poor live in) for 50 cents/pound he argues that the barriers to buying wholesome food will be lowered and he goes on to argue that our health care costs will be lowered because people will be healthier.

Read the op-ed and discuss this at the dinner table: how would you feel about government taxing foods that are considered unhealthful?  Do you see any downsides?  Is this the start of a slippery slope of regulation?  Is that a bad thing if it's in our best interests?

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