McDonald’s response to the sugar tax – sugary drinks served outside of the meal menus

Wpis dostępny jest także w języku: polski

McDonald’s replaces the sweet carbonated drinks with mineral water in OkazYEAH meal menu. All due to the sugar tax, as the company’s Corporate Relations Specialist, Patrycja Pazio discloses for the website.

Due to the increase in the price of sweetened beverages, the company was forced to implement some alterations to their menu. Currently, the only drink options available in the McDonald’s meal menus are either mineral or sparkling water. Patrycja Pazio points out, however, that these changes are consistent with McDonald’s long-standing efforts to offer customers more balanced food alternatives.

The company is working on a solution that will allow for the purchase of any drink under OkazYEAH. One suggestion is to reduce the size of the soda bottles. Patrycja Pazio also emphasizes that the deals offered through OkazYEAH are not static, with offers changing and valid for a specific period of time.  

In our opinion, according to current legislation, a sugar levy should be paid on the syrup used to prepare drinks in restaurants. It should be paid by the wholesaler selling the syrup to the retailer. As McDonald’s we operate under this premise and the sugar levy on syrup will be paid in accordance with this premise – adds Patrycja Pazio.

PMR expert’s view

Agnieszka Skonieczna
Retail Business Unit Director

Given the increases in drink prices that the sugar tax has introduced, McDonald’s decision is not surprising, especially for drinks in promotional packs. The sugar tax is in fact PLN 0,5 if the sugars in the drink are equal to or less than 5 g per 100 ml of drink, or if there is at least one sweetener referred to in Regulation 1333/2008 (EU Regulation on food additives) in any quantity. For every gram of sugar above 5 g/100 ml, the charge is an additional PLN 0.05. Drinks containing added caffeine or taurine are subject to an additional charge of PLN 0.1 per litre of drink. In total, the maximum surcharge will be PLN 1.2 per litre of beverage.


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