Hamburger addicts, barbecue junkies, and fried chicken fanatics may soon be asked to pay a surcharge for their love of meat.
Excise taxes on beef, pork, and chicken could be the next big thing in a state and local tax environment that’s already comfortable with “sin tax” regimes aimed at cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, and gambling and is adapting quickly to special levies on sugar-sweetened beverages, greenhouse gases, and marijuana.
While there are no current legislative proposals imposing state or local surcharges on meat, a growing number of public health, environmental, and animal rights advocates are bullish on tax schemes addressing the mounting social costs of meat production and consumption.
“We have never been closer to a meat tax,” said Ashley Byrne, associate director of campaigns for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). “We have seen people—including meat eaters—realizing that meat is bad for their health and meat is taking this incredible toll on the environment. People seem more open than ever to an excise tax on meat. If we are going to tax tobacco, if we are going to tax soda, it absolutely makes sense to have a similar tax on meat.”
Read more at Bloomberg.