Your favourite soft drink is going to cost you more as of April 1 | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Your favourite soft drink is going to cost you more as of April 1

As of April 1, soda drinks will no longer qualify as a food item and will be subject to 7 per cent PST in B.C.
Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK
February 19, 2021 - 12:00 PM

The cost of your carbonated beverage of choice is going to get a bit pricier in B.C. this spring as the government begins applying the provincial sales tax to soda.

A provincial sales tax notice issued recently to retailers by the Ministry of Finance says soda beverages will no longer qualify for the exemption for food products and PST will apply to all retail sales of soda beverages at a rate of seven per cent as of April 1.

The change is no April Fool’s joke as retailers will be expected to break down food and drink combo specials and remit the tax on the beverage portion of the deal.

The tax will also apply to all soft drink vending machines, regardless of whether there are non-applicable beverages in the vending machine mix.

Soda beverages are defined as carbonated or effervescent beverages that have bubbles and fizz, and contain any of the following:

  • Sugar
  • Natural occurring sweeteners
  • Added natural sweeteners
  • Artificial sweeteners

Examples of soda beverages include:

  • Soft drinks and soda pop
  • Sparkling fruit juices
  • Carbonated or nitrogenized energy drinks
  • Kombucha
  • Nitrogenized coffee (if sweetened)
  • Sparkling, sweetened water

Soda beverages can also include frozen sweetened beverages such as Slurpees or Frosters that have been carbonated or had other gases added, and sweetened effervescent beverages that have had frozen desserts, fruit or candy added to them.

Dealcoholized beer, sparkling wine and cider, liquor, plain bottled water and non-carbonated fruit juices are some examples of beverages not covered by the new tax.

More details can be found in the ministry's Notice to Sellers of Soda Beverages here.


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