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Bolivia Plans to Tax Beer to Encourage Milk

LA PAZ, Bolivia - Bolivia's government has a message for beer drinkers: Get milk.

The South American country's productive development minister complains that beer consumption is rising 10 percent a year while milk consumption is stable. And Teresa Morales says "Bolivians consume more beer than milk." Officials say Bolivians drink 30 liters of milk a year and 35 liters of beer.

Morales is backing a bill that imposes a small tax on beer to finance promotion of milk's benefits.

Other alcoholic beverages also will carry the new tax. The measure received final approval from Bolivia's congress on Friday.

Morales says the milk industry is running at just 60 percent of capacity.