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VAT (Savoury Products)

Volume 547: debated on Tuesday 26 June 2012

15. What representations he has received on the treatment of different savoury products for the purposes of levying VAT. (113591)

HMRC is shortly to publish on its website a summary of the responses to its consultation, “VAT: Addressing borderline anomalies”. The response document will contain a list of those who contributed to the consultation.

As I am sure you know, Mr Speaker, Newcastle is the home of the Greggs pasty, so I was hopeful that the Chancellor’s latest U-turn but one would have resolved the great savouries shambles, but now I learn that he has turned his wrath on the pretzel sellers of Newcastle, including Auntie Anne’s in Eldon Square. Could the Chancellor possibly focus on bringing growth to the economy, rather than confusion to our eating habits?

I am sure the hon. Lady is aware that Greggs welcomed what we said about hot food. None the less, there has been an anomaly in the tax system whereby some hot foods have been treated differently from others. We are seeking to remove that anomaly and that is exactly what we are doing.