How should we evaluate sweetened beverage tax policies? A review of worldwide experience.
BMC Public Health 2021 ; 21: 1941.
PubMed ID : 34702248
PMCID : PMC8546197
Over 45 jurisdictions globally have implemented sweetened beverage taxes. Researchers and policymakers need to assess whether and how these taxes change beverage demand and supply, their intended and unanticipated health, economic and equity impacts. Lessons from such evaluations can maximise the policies' success and impact on non-communicable disease prevention globally. We discuss key theoretical, design and methodological considerations to help policymakers, funders and researchers commission and conduct rigorous evaluations of these policies and related disease prevention efforts. We encourage involving the perspectives of various stakeholders on what evaluations are needed given the specific context, what data and methods are appropriate, readily available or can be collected within time and budget constraints. A logic model /conceptual system map of anticipated implications across sectors and scales should help identify optimal study design, analytical techniques and measures. These models should be updated when synthesising findings across diverse methods and integrating findings across subpopulations using similar methods.