I was SO thrilled to hear this news today via Natural Products Online.
I know Oliver personally - a great guy - and know how tirelessly he has taken on this issue to make wheatgrass juice available to the masses. Such great news to see he won the case...
Wheatgrass juice business Tonic Attack last week won a three-year battle to have its products classified as a ‘food’ and so therefore exempt from VAT, reports The Grocer.
Brand owner and organic farmer, Oliver Dowding, decided to take his case to a VAT tribunal after HM Revenue & Customs reversed its initial assessment that Tonic Attack was a food product, deciding to classify it as a drink.
The definition of a drink, for VAT purposes, is a product that “is drunk to quench thirst, hydrate the consumer and give pleasure”. Dowding argued that wheatgrass juice does not meet this description. He also said that if Tonic Attack were subject to VAT it would simply end up being to expensive to be viable.
It seems, however, that what eventually swayed the tribunal’s decision was evidence presented by Professor Sean Strain, who said that wheatgrass juice contained sufficient levels of protein to be considered more as a food than a drink.
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I am hoping that Oliver will fill us in a bit more on any of the above.
Congratulations and thank you Oliver!