July 12, 2024

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‘It will make no sense:’ NDP phone calls on Sask. government to finish ‘snack tax’

‘It will make no sense:’ NDP phone calls on Sask. government to finish ‘snack tax’
'It makes no sense:' NDP calls on Sask. government to end 'snack tax'

NDP Finance Critic Trent Wotherspoon and NDP Leader Carla Beck with some objects that can be taxed and other folks that can’t under the province’s so-called ‘snack tax.’ (Daniel Reech/980 CJME)

As numerous people today across the province proceed to offer with inflation, the Saskatchewan NDP is calling on the provincial government to get rid of what it calls the “snack tax.”

In 2017, the Saskatchewan Occasion launched 6 for each cent PST on restaurant foods, but that also included geared up meals offered at grocery outlets (like rotisserie rooster), carbonated drinks and one-serving drinks.

“The rules around what types of food items are and are not subjected to the Sask. Party’s so-called ‘snack tax’ are about as distinct as mud,” NDP Finance Critic Trent Wotherspoon stated through a media function Tuesday.

“Rotisserie chickens, they’re taxable, but a raw rooster is not. Mixed or salted nuts? They are taxed, but non-combined nuts are not.”

Grocery goods introduced to a media occasion hosted by the Saskatchewan NDP on May well 9, 2023. (Daniel Reech/980 CJME)

Wotherspoon talked about other facets of the tax he felt ended up arbitrary or contradictory, this kind of as taxing points like yogurt products and pre-packaged salads though exempting iced tea blend and microwavable popcorn.

“Then there is also the extra confusion of measurement and amount,” Wotherspoon reported.

“Certain foods things are categorised as so-known as ‘snack foods’ but only taxed when they are packaged in smaller parts — something that we’re also looking at makers carrying out. (That is) a thing referred to as ‘shrinkflation.’ ”

Wotherspoon mentioned as an illustration that granola bars or muffins in offers of 5 are topic to the tax though those people similar foodstuff objects in deals of 6 or more would be exempt.

“It can make no sense,” Wotherspoon stated.

NDP Chief Carla Beck explained ending the tax would be a massive aid to people today having difficulties to get by.

“It’s convoluted,” Beck reported. “It’s introducing excess charges for people today who are getting four months instead of 6 for the reason that they can’t pay for six any more time or just cannot afford to pay for to go to the drive-via but are striving to offer a meal to their little ones just before they head on to soccer or football exercise.”

Through Tuesday’s Query Period, Finance Minister Donna Harpauer mentioned the provincial governing administration made use of the very same definition as the federal authorities in conditions of what gets experienced as snack meals.

Harpauer said the tax was introduced to develop a secure foundation of revenue to pay for health treatment, education and learning and social basic safety nets.

“The broad vast majority of groceries are not subjected to PST, nor are they subjected to GST,” Harpauer reported.