The recent sugar tax that has been put into force has been well received by Essex County Council.

The sugar tax, which came into effect this month, is a charge that is applied to soft drinks due to their sugar content.

The more sugar per millilitre, the higher the tax on production or import.

This initiative will be used to tackle the rise of obesity in the UK, especially when applied to children.

Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care, Councillor John Spence said: “Perhaps the greatest virtue of the new legislation has been the reduction of sugar in soft drinks and foods across so many manufacturers.

“I welcome the news that the Department for Education will be doubling the amounts of physical activity offered in primary schools as a result of the sugar tax – which means that all schools will be able to deliver further improvements to their PE and Sport provision, which is great news.

“The revenue created by the ‘sugar tax’ aims to contribute towards giving school-aged children a brighter and healthier future, which is of course something that we welcome wholeheartedly.”

Essex County Council are already working to combat the risks of obesity including working closely with schools through the Healthy Schools Award.

Another initiative is the “Tuck In” programme where work with takeaway outlets, encouraging and them to use healthier cooking practices.

Council workplaces offer a range of healthy food options and encourage regular physical activity challenges for staff.

They also work closely with Active Essex, whose aim is to make sport and physical activity accessible to all Essex residents, particularly young people.

In the past six months, pupils across the county have walked, skipped and run 129,600 miles a week as part of the “Daily Mile” initiative.