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The government’s goal is to tax the most important foodstuffs with the lowest possible levels of VAT, and accordingly will continue to reduce the VAT on key foods in 2018. The VAT on fish and pork offal and by-products for human consumption will be reduced from 27 percent to 5 percent beginning in January.

Prior to 2010, the left-wing liberal Governments doubled the VAT on foods, making it difficult for the Hungarian families, and especially pensioners, to get by. The high tax rate also affected agricultural sector businesses.

In contrast, one of the main aims of the civil government is to increase domestic consumption by providing people with cheap and affordable food and to bring more Hungarian food from a high quality, healthy environment to the family table. Accordingly, in recent years the government has reduced the VAT on a large number of basic foodstuffs, including reductions of the level of VAT to just 5% on pork and poultry meat, fresh milk and eggs.

From 1 January 2018 the government will continue these VAT cuts: the VAT on fish for consumption, pork offal and by-products for human consumption (e.g. trotters and pigs’ feet) and pork offal (e.g. tongue, liver, and brain), will all be reduced to 5 percent. Thanks to the VAT cuts, the average family will save at least 35-40 thousand forints per year.

The other big winner of the tax cuts is agriculture because both the food economy and agriculture are enjoying more opportunities as a result of the tax cuts and the black economy is shrinking, while people can buy more and increase their consumption.

The current reduction in the VAT rate of fish products and the recently introduced Hungarian Quality Fish (MMH) trademark can also contribute to the further growth of domestic fish consumption.

The Ministry of Agriculture is glad to see that the domestic per capita consumption of fish has increased to around six kilograms over the past 10 years, and fisheries and the fish management sector have become an integral part of Hungarian society. Domestic fisheries have a decisive national economic significance, in addition to which they contribute to the stability of rural regions and to sustainable development.

Source: Ministry of Agriculture Press Office

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