Woman eating fish and chipsQ: How will the new ‘pasty’ tax affect me?

A: The Chancellor George Osbourne first announced his intention to add 20 per cent VAT on certain takeaway foods in the March 2012 Budget. It was dubbed the ‘pasty’ tax and caused uproar among the general public.

In May, the government announced the tax would only apply to food which is cooked and then kept warm for customers, such as rotisserie chicken or fish and chips, and this came into force on 2nd October 2012.

Foods which have been cooked and then left to cool, such as sausage rolls or Cornish pasties, are exempt from the ruling so you won’t notice an increase in price on these items.

But anything cooked and then kept warm either on a hot plate or in a warm cabinet will now face a 20 per cent tax, and it’s likely theis increase will be added on to the price. For example, a cod and large chips that before 2nd October would have cost £4.50, could now cost £5.40, making it a not so tasty treat.

Andrea Ventress, Money expert

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