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Is it a flapjack?

19 November 2009
Issue: 4234 / Categories: Tax cases , VAT
Asda Stores Ltd (TC211)

Asda contacted HMRC in May 2008 to obtain agreement that a new product it wished to sell should be zero rated.

The product called a ‘seed stack flapjack’ had been developed by a former professional wrestler. He had to stop this when he developed Crohn’s disease.

He then decided to adopt a healthy lifestyle and created the seed stack flapjack as a result of his research.

The flapjack ingredients were 23.3% rolled oats 38.66% various seeds 39.8% honey and nutmeg and vanilla extract.

Asda considered this to be a cake rather than an item of confectionary because it had the appearance of a flapjack contained no cereal other than oats was baked and was unlikely to appeal to children or be eaten as a sweet.

HMRC disagreed. They considered it to be confectionary and therefore standard rated for VAT.

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