For the second consecutive month, the city's Department of Revenue announced the funds collected from the Philadelphia Beverage Tax brought in more money than its projections predicted.
The Revenue Dept. said February yielded $6.4 million in soda tax revenue, and also upped the initial figure for the first month of the year to $5.9 million from $5.7 million, an anticipated adjustment.
The Mayor's Office estimated soda tax revenue in February to amount to $6.3 million, according to the Kenney Administration's budget proposal.
At a total of $12.3 million in revenue collected so far, the beverage tax does not appear to be deterring consumers at the rate that city officials expected nor at the levels Pepsi and others claim.
Earlier this week, BillyPenn.com reported Pepsi is done offering 2-liters and 12-packs of its products to Philadelphia grocery stores and instead the New York-based soda giant will supply retailers with smaller sizes of its products. It's a strategy that beverage analysts say Pepsi and other major soda companies used in the past as consumer preferences shifted towards more healthier drinks; the smaller sized items offer bigger profit margins.
Pepsi, as well as locally owned beverage distributors and retailers like ShopRite, have said the soda tax has hurt their bottom lines – leading them to lay off workers or cut employees' hours.
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