Coffee, soft drinks and juices remain in VAT 24%

Coffee in Plaka / photo Antonis Nikolopoulos

Changes in VAT – once again – will again bring disruptions to the market, especially in the focus, where in fact three different items will be served, with two different VATs, while the mess will be bigger in coffee.

The provisions that take the road to parliament – as the government has at least announced – stipulate that VAT on the focus returns to 13%. However, this does not apply to all species.

Which foods at 13%
Almost all of the food is 13% , spirits remain as always at 24%, while the Finance Ministry has clarified that coffee, soft drinks, juices and other beverages are at the same high rate, although they are not spirits.

So what happens when someone sits in a café and orders a coffee and a cheese pie?

Other VAT on cheese pie, another in coffee
The receipt will come in two strokes: the cheese pie will now be charged 13% VAT, while the coffee will continue to pay 24%.

However, especially for coffee, the professionals in the area stress that the product has been overburdened after the introduction of a Special Consumption Tax, with net sales over the past year dropping by 1.9%.

The imposition of the NIC in coffee, also led to a correspondingly high price increase of 10-30%, as well as to doubling the cost of the raw material, significantly affecting the professionals in the industry.

According to a recent Nielsen survey, the biggest consequences of the tax shift were observed on the shelf, with increases of 23%.

Indeed, these increases are even greater in the most economical and widespread coffee categories, such as Greek coffee (30% increase in average retail selling price). 

The measure affects retirees and young people
From the demographic analysis of the consumer profile, the measure affects to a greater extent the weaker socio-economic classes, such as retirees and young people.

This whole story of “double” VAT brings to mind the unbelievable alum of 2015 when the original wording of the relevant law laid down another tax when the souvlaki was not even taxed when the butcher was accompanying it with spices or peppers, as well as scenes of infinite beauty during the previous application of reduced VAT on the focus when the coffee served had 23% and coffee by hand 13%.
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