An Overview of VAT on Takeaway Food

Value Added Tax (VAT) is a tax that is levied on the sale of goods and services. It is a type of indirect tax, meaning it is passed onto the consumer when they purchase an item or service. In the UK, VAT is charged on most goods and services at a rate of 20%. This includes takeaway food – so if you are a customer buying takeaway food, you will be paying VAT on top of the price listed. Let’s take a closer look at why this is and what it means for customers. Any person who needs to calculate VAT can make use of an online VAT calculator.

How VAT Works on Takeaway Food

VAT works by taxing businesses based on the value added to their products or services. This means that businesses have to pay tax to HMRC based on how much they charge customers for their goods or services minus any costs associated with producing or acquiring those goods or services (such as staff wages). The difference between these two figures is known as “value-added”, which is then subject to taxation at the standard rate.

For example, if you run a sandwich shop and charge £10 for one of your sandwiches, but only had to spend £2 making it (on ingredients like bread, cheese, etc), then you would pay taxation on £8 worth of value added (the £10 minus the £2). This applies to takeaway food too – so if you buy something from a takeaway shop for £10, then in addition to that cost you are also paying 20% in taxes (£2) that go directly to HMRC.

It’s important to note that not all takeaway food falls under this category – there are certain types of food that do not attract any VAT at all, such as hot baked potatoes and freshly made sandwiches with uncooked filling. So if you are ordering something from a takeaway shop make sure you know what kind of food you are getting – because it could make a big difference in terms of how much money you save!


In conclusion, Value Added Tax (VAT) applies to most types of takeaway food purchased in the UK. The amount charged depends on how much value has been added by the business selling the product – which can vary significantly depending on what kind of item it is and how much it costs.

As such, customers should always be aware of what kind of food they are buying when ordering from a takeaway shop – because some items may not attract any VAT at all! Knowing this information can help customers save money when purchasing their favorite takeaways!

Leave a Comment