What if there was a tax on gum? Apply the current cigarette tax onto gum, and each individual piece of gum will cost $0.28 each compared to $0.30 per cigarette. Here’s how the formula used to figure it out:
- $6.00 pack (with tax)
- 20 cigarettes in a pack
- $0.30 per cigarette
- $0.83 pack (with no gum tax)
- 12 pieces of gum in a pack
- $0.07 per piece of gum (with no gum tax)
To buy cigarettes in chicago, the tax is $2.53/pack. So let’s put that onto gum. A $0.83 gum pack would then cost $3.36/pack. A whopping 28 cents per gum! That’s almost the exact same amount per cigarette!
Actually in Feb 2005, there was talk of putting tax on gum in London. Instead the “gum summit” in London decided to send gum manufacturer Wrigley a giant mean postcard signed by all delegate cities, with the message “Wish You Weren’t Here.”
However, an industry spokesman said, “Our research shows that a tax or levy would not be effective, as people would feel they have a right to drop the gum because they had already paid for it to be cleaned up.”
I say they should just have fun and connect the dots with gum on the sidewalk.