Cans of soda are displayed in a case at Kwik Stops Liquor in San Diego, California February 13, 2014.
Cans of soda are displayed in a case at Kwik Stops Liquor in San Diego, California February 13, 2014. Reuters/Sam Hodgson

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver is pressing Australia and other countries to adopt a tax measure on sugary drinks after Britain announced such move.

"Australia, pull your finger out," Oliver said in a video he posted on his Facebook account. He also made a special mention of Canada and Germany, urging them to follow Britain’s lead. “This is bold and brave and this will send ripples around the world as far as how these weak, pathetic governments combat the rise in childhood obesity and diet-related disease,” he said in the video. “It’s about time your governments got on this. I know you’re all talking about it but you’re all scared of industry.”

The food revolution is underway

The food revolution is underway. This feels like a victory for Britain's children and for everyone who has campaigned so hard for a tax on sugary sweetened drinks. I would love the money to go to food education as well as sport but I think we have to applaud the Chancellor for taking this extremely important, bold step. I hope that this bravery will continue to form a part of this Government's attitude to dealing with obesity and will influence the Prime Minister's Childhood Obesity strategy later in the year.

Posted by Jamie Oliver on Wednesday, March 16, 2016

On Wednesday, Britain's Finance Minister George Osborne announced a sugar tax on soft drinks. The levy on sugary beverages will be imposed on drinks with more than five grams of sugar per 100 millilitres, as well as those with more than eight grams of sugar per 100 millilitres. The measure, which will be effective in 2018, will not affect pure fruit juices and milk drinks, according to a report by

Oliver, who is known to staunchly lobby for soft drink tax, took to social media to share the development. He wrote, “We did it!!! A sugar levy on sugary sweetened drinks ... A profound move that will ripple around the world ... business cannot come between our kids health.”

While some of Oliver’s followers congratulated him for his efforts, some criticised the celebrity chef. Twitter users pointed out the repercussions of Britain’s latest move, such as the use of sugar alternatives and the measure’s effect on small businesses.

Others, on the other hand, accused Oliver for being an anti-sugar campaigner yet featuring sugar-loaded recipes on his shows and serving them on his restaurants.

One user even apologised to Australia for being dragged into the issue. Twitter user Timthemoth wrote, “Dear #Australia I would like to apologise in advance for @jamieoliver and any of his ideological bulls--t that you have to endure.”