Unintended consequence of Norwegian state intervention in sugar sales


The upcoming sharp rise in Norway’s sugar tax has left both the confectionery industry and retailers dumbfounded by the prospect of job cuts and vanishing revenues. In neighboring Sweden, however, traders are rubbing their hands in glee at the thought of serving Norway’s carb-craving sugar fiends with their daily fix.

While next year’s increase in the “sugar tax” on sweets, chocolate and soft beverages is expected to attract no less than NOK 2 billion ($240 million) to the Norwegian treasury, it perhaps goes without saying that the nation’s food industry is strongly against of the tax.


Brewery and Beverage Association director Petter Nome concurred in that the government puts both jobs and public health at stake.

“20 percent of the soda we drink in Norway has been bought in Sweden,” said Petter Nome, pointing out a continuous increase in the border trade. “Cars are filled with candies and soda, and people consume far more than they would otherwise,” he added.