California Poll: Voters Support Soda Tax, Warning Label

The results of the Field Poll could provide momentum for a state bill that Sen. Bill Monning introduced last week, requiring safety warning labels on sugary drinks.

SAN FRANCISCOTwo in three California voters support taxing sodas and other sugary drinks, according to a poll conducted for the California Endowment.

The Field Poll, released today and based on telephone interviews with 1,002 registered voters between Nov. 14 and Dec. 5, also revealed that 74% of voters endorse a proposal that would require a warning on sugary drinks alerting consumers that such beverages contribute to diabetes, tooth decay and obesity.

The California Endowment, a statewide health foundation, said support for the warning was bipartisan, with those in favor including 80% of Democrats, 64% of Republicans and 75% of independents.

The results could provide momentum for a state bill that Sen. Bill Monning (D-Carmel) introduced last week, requiring safety warning labels on sugary drinks. The legislation would require the following disclaimer: "STATE OF CALIFORNIA SAFETY WARNING: Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay."

According to the California Endowment, 67% of respondents favored a proposal taxing sugary drinks and using the proceeds to fund school nutrition and physical activity programs for children. In a similar Field Poll conducted in late 2012, 68% of voters supported taxing sugary drinks, the health foundation said.

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