Mexico

Mexican flag

We have been working with our research partners in Mexico on obesity prevention initiatives for almost two decades. Mexico has a very high overweight and obesity prevalence that continues to grow rapidly, particularly among children and adolescents. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes in Mexico is also one of the highest in the world. Our major activities with Mexico thus far have been work on a beverage guidance panel, evaluations of the country’s sugary drink and nonessential foods taxes, and most recently, preparing for a collaborative evaluation of their newly passed front-of-package warning label law.

Our evaluations: The SSB tax and nonessential food tax evaluations focused on a number of studies that looked the impact of the taxes on prices, food and beverage purchases, impacts on diet and employment. The front-of-package warning label evaluation will combine food purchase impact with studies on the impact on children and their diets, knowledge and attitudes, food and beverage reformulations, and food purchase patterns.

Policies

Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-051-SCFI/SSA1-2010 | Implemented October 1, 2020

Front-of-package warning labels

This amendment to NOM-051 mandates that products containing added sodium, fat, or sugar that exceed thresholds set by the Ministry of Health for energy, sugar, saturated fat, trans fat, or sodium content must carry warning labels indicating that the product is in "excess” of that nutrient. The nutritional criteria will grow increasingly strict under Phase II implementation (October 2023 – October 2025). Additionally, the warning labels must be accompanied by warning messages that they are harmful to children if they contain any amount of added caffeine or non-sugar sweeteners, ie, “Contains sweeteners — not recommended for children” and ‘Contains caffeine — avoid giving to children.”

Mexico FOP Warning Labels

Read law in English

Ley del Impuesto Especial sobre Producción y Servicios | Implemented January 1, 2014

Excise Tax Law for Production and Services

  • Tax on sugary drinks: 1 peso per liter excise tax on any non-alcoholic beverage with added sugar, including concentrates (powders or syrups, taxed based on reconstituted volume); exempts milk beverages, 100% juices
  • Tax on junk foods: 8% sales tax on non-essential foods containing >275 calories/100 grams in these categories:
    • Snacks
    • Confectionery products.
    • Chocolate and other cocoa products.
    • Custards and puddings
    • Fruit and vegetable sweets
    • Peanut and hazelnut creams
    • Dulces de leche
    • Prepared cereal foods
    • Ice cream, snow and ice popsicles

Read law in: English or Spanish

Read tax law resolution (definition of basic foods exempt of tax) in: Spanish (See I.5.1.3.)

Publications

  • Simulating international tax designs on sugar-sweetened beverages in Mexico
    Authors: Juan Carlos Salgado Hernández, Shu Wen Ng
    Published in: PLOS ONE, August 19, 2021 view full text

  • Soft drink intake is associated with weight gain, regardless of physical activity levels: The health workers cohort study
    Authors: Romina González-Morales, Francisco Canto-Osorio, Dalia Stern, Luz María Sánchez-Romero, Leticia Torres-Ibarra, Rubí Hernández-López, Berenice Rivera-Paredez, Dèsirée Vidaña-Pérez, Paula Ramírez-Palacios, Jorge Salmerón, Barry M. Popkin, Tonatiuh Barrientos-Gutiérrez
    Published in: International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, December 1, 2020 view full text

  • Pedraza LS, Popkin BM, Adair L, Robinson WR, Taillie LS. Mexican households’ food shopping patterns in 2015: Analysis following nonessential food and sugary beverage taxes. Public Health Nutrition. 2020 Aug 5:1-13. view full text

  • Sánchez-Romero LM, Canto-Osorio F, González-Morales R, Colchero MA, Ng SW, Ramírez-Palacios P, Salmerón J, Barrientos-Gutiérrez T. Association between tax on sugar sweetened beverages and soft drink consumption in adults in Mexico: Open cohort longitudinal analysis of Health Workers Cohort Study. BMJ. 2020 May 6;369:m1311. doi: 10.1136/bmj.m1311. view full text

  • Body weight impact of the sugar-sweetened beverages tax in Mexican children: A modeling study
    Authors: Rossana Torres-Álvarez, Rodrigo Barrán-Zubaran, Francisco Canto-Osorio, Luz M. Sánchez-Romero, Dalia Camacho-García-Formentí, Barry M. Popkin, Juan A. Rivera, Rafael Meza, Tonatiuh Barrientos-Gutiérrez
    Published in: Pediatr Obes, April 13 2020 view full text

  • Understanding heterogeneity in price changes and firm responses to a national unhealthy food tax in Mexico
    Authors: Juan C. Salgado, Shu Wen Ng
    Published in: Food Policy, December 1 2019 view full text

  • The caloric and sugar content of beverages purchased at different store-types changed after the sugary drinks taxation in Mexico
    Authors: Lilia S. Pedraza, Barry M. Popkin, Carolina Batis, Linda Adair, Whitney R. Robinson, David K. Guilkey, Lindsey S. Taillie
    Published in: Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act, November 12 2019 view full text

  • The association of overall diet quality with BMI and waist circumference by education level in Mexican men and women
    Authors: Nancy López-Olmedo, Barry M. Popkin, Michelle A. Mendez, Lindsey S. Taillie
    Published in: Public Health Nutr. PLOS ONE, October 23 2019 view full text

  • Association between socioeconomic status and diet quality in Mexican men and women: A cross-sectional study
    Authors: Nancy López-Olmedo, Barry M. Popkin, Lindsey S. Taillie
    Published in: PLOS One, October 23 2019 view full text

  • Cross-sectional association between diet quality and cardiometabolic risk by education level in Mexican adults
    Authors: Nancy López-Olmedo, Barry M. Popkin, Penny Gordon-Larsen, Lindsey S. Taillie
    Published in: Public Health Nutrition, February 2019 view full text

  • Did high sugar-sweetened beverage purchasers respond differently to the excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages in Mexico?
    Authors: Shu Wen Ng, Juan A. Rivera, Barry M. Popkin, Michelle A. Colchero
    Published in: Public Health Nutr, March 2019 view full text

  • Patterns and trends in the intake distribution of manufactured and homemade sugar-sweetened beverages in pre-tax Mexico, 1999-2012
    Authors: Tania Aburto, Jennifer M. Poti, Barry M. Popkin
    Published in: Public Health Nutr, December 2018 view full text

  • Mexican households’ purchases of foods and beverages vary by store-type, taxation status, and SES
    Authors: Lilia S. Pedraza, Barry M. Popkin, Juan C. Salgado, Lindsey S. Taillie
    Published in: Nutrients, August 8 2018 view full text

  • Non-Nutritive Sweeteners in the Packaged Food Supply—An Assessment across 4 Countries
    Authors: Elizabeth K. Dunford, Lindsey S. Taillie, Donna R. Miles, Hellen Eyles, Lizabeth Tolentino-Mayo, Shu Wen Ng
    Published in: Nutrients, 2018 view full text

  • The Socioeconomic Disparities in Intakes and Purchases of Less-Healthy Foods and Beverages Have Changed over Time in Urban Mexico
    Authors: Nancy López-Olmedo, Barry M. Popkin, Lindsey S. Taillie 
    Published in: J Nutr, January 1 2018 view full text