Spirit Cruises January 2023 Leaderboard

What Does the Philly Beverage Tax Mean for Drinkers?

by Jessie Donofrio on Jan 10, 2017 in Culture
The beverage tax, passed in June of 2016, went into effect on Sunday, January 1. The tax adds a 1.5 cents per ounce cost to most drinks that contain sugar or artificial sweeteners. The only exceptions are baby formula, drinks with more than 50 percent real milk, and vegetable or fruit juice.
 
The tax is owed by beverage distributors, and Mayor Jim Kenney’s office has noted that it isn’t required for distributors to pass the tax onto dealers such as grocery stores, bars, restaurants and corner stores. However, distributors are passing the cost of the tax along to dealers, and in turn those establishments are passing the bulk (in most cases 100 percent) of the tax onto the consumer.
 
So, what drinks are going to be taxed? Philly.com put together a very useful infographic to outline what beverages will be taxed, but we’ll give you a quick rundown. All soda, including diet, caffeine-free, and zero calorie anything, is going to be taxed. Sports drinks, iced tea, energy drinks, tonic water, canned coffee, and fruit and vegetable juices that contain added sugar or less than 50 percent fresh fruit juice will also be taxed. Alcohol mixers such as margarita mix and other sugary concoctions sold at grocery stores will be taxed.
 
Here’s the fun part—these are the drinks that will not be taxed: seltzer, sparkling waters and club soda (with no artificial sweeteners), tomato juice (for your bloody Marys), unsweetened teas and coffee, and water! And of course, most importantly, alcohol is NOT included in the Philly beverage tax.
 
People have been freaking out about the tax, even though we’ve known about it for six months. The tax is a major victory for the future of the city since it benefits  both Pre-K and our public parks. It was also a huge defeat of the soda industry that probably enjoys the fact that 68 percent of Philadelphia adults are classified as obese.

Bottom line: liquor, wine and beer prices aren’t changing, but non-alcoholic, sugary drink prices are. You are going to probably have to start paying more for rum and cokes at the bar soon, and also for your store-bought Margaritaville marg buckets, but on the bright side, we'll probably all be healthier in the long run.

Photo via Flickr user jpockele


Tags: Cocktails, Education, News
Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
48 Record Bar: An Inside Look at an Audiophile's Listening Room & Cocktail Bar

48 Record Bar: An Inside Look at an Audiophile's Listening Room & Cocktail Bar

48 Record Bar is the newest addition to the growing Listening Room trend in Philadelphia...read more ›

by Drink Philly Feb 19, 2024
The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

In a city with new bar openings every week, it can be hard to keep up with the everchanging Philly cocktail landscape. Don't worry, we've got you cove...read more ›

by Drink Philly Dec 14, 2023
Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2023

Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2023

We've got your definitive list of where to drink outside in Philadelphia...read more ›

by Drink Philly May 27, 2023
SPONSORED
Spirit Cruises January 2023 Desktop Bottom Rectangle 1
Pamper Yourself at These Spas with Bars in Philadelphia

Pamper Yourself at These Spas with Bars in Philadelphia

Whether you're going solo or heading out with friends, we've got just the place for your to relax and enjoy a good drink...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Apr 5, 2023
The Best Mocktails, Zero Proof, & Non-Alcoholic Drinks in Philadelphia

The Best Mocktails, Zero Proof, & Non-Alcoholic Drinks in Philadelphia

Not drinking alcohol tonight? These bars and restaurants have you covered with inventive, thoughtful, and down...read more ›

by Michelle Cassidy Jan 11, 2023
Inflation Hits PA Wine & Spirits with 4% Price Increase Across 3,500 Products

Inflation Hits PA Wine & Spirits with 4% Price Increase Across 3,500 Products

The PLCB, announced that a 4% price increase would go into effect on 3,554 of its most popular wine and spirit...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Jan 9, 2023
The Philly Distiller Who Got Laid Off and Moved to Hawaii to Make Gin

The Philly Distiller Who Got Laid Off and Moved to Hawaii to Make Gin

In this segment we speak to Olivia Babiec, the former Philadelphia Distiller who moved to Hawaii to make gin...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Jan 5, 2023
Bars & Restaurants that Host Private Events in Philadelphia

Bars & Restaurants that Host Private Events in Philadelphia

Holidays, birthdays, weddings, or any private event - Philadelphia has you covered...read more ›

by Drink Philly Dec 5, 2022
Where to Celebrate Philly Cider Week 2022, October 23-30

Where to Celebrate Philly Cider Week 2022, October 23-30

The fourth annual Philadelphia Cider Week is being celebrated from Sunday, October 23 through Sunday, October 30...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Oct 21, 2022
Enjoy Fall Weather & PA Ciders in a Historic Setting at CiderFest, October 15 & 16

Enjoy Fall Weather & PA Ciders in a Historic Setting at CiderFest, October 15 & 16

Fall is here and what better way to celebrate than at CiderFest at the historic Woodford Mansion in Fairmount ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Oct 13, 2022
SPONSORED
Spirit Cruises January 2023 Desktop Bottom Rectangle 2
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close