78% of Calif. Voters Support Putting Warning Labels on Sugary Drinks
More than three-quarters of registered California voters support adding warning labels to sugar-sweetened beverages, according to a statewide Field Poll released on Wednesday, KQED's "State of Health" reports.
Details of Poll
The California Center for Public Health Advocacy commissioned the poll. It was conducted via telephone from Dec. 10, 2015, to Jan. 3.
Participants were asked whether they would support adding a label to sugary beverages stating: "Studies show that daily consumption of soda and other sugary drinks contributes to diabetes, obesity and tooth decay."
The poll found that 78% of registered voters support warning labels for sugary drinks -- slightly up from 74% in 2014. Of those who said they support warning labels in the most recent poll, 54% said they "strongly" favor such labels.
Support was particularly strong among Latinos voters, of which 85% said they support the warning labels.
When asked why they support warning labels:
- 28.6% said labels would promote "greater personal responsibility" for individuals to reduce their sugar consumption;
- 28% said consumers have a "right to know the truth" about the products they purchase; and
- 21% said labels would help parents make better choices for their children.
Harold Goldstein, executive director of CPHA, said the findings indicate that "voters in California want to know the scientific truth about the harmful effects of these sugary drinks ... and they want that information right there on the front of cans and bottles."
Reaction From Beverage Industry
Bob Achermann, executive director of industry group CalBev, in a statement said adding warning labels to sugar-sweetened drinks would be misleading. "The best way to promote balanced lifestyles is through fact-based information," Achermann said, "rather than simplistic approaches that target just one product but don't ultimately address complex health challenges." (Aliferis, "State of Health," KQED, 1/13).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.