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Food & Beverage Tax Developments in California, DC, Philadelphia, and Washington

By: Joseph Bishop-Henchman

Imposing new excise taxAn excise tax is a tax imposed on a specific good or activity. Excise taxes are commonly levied on cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, soda, gasoline, insurance premiums, amusement activities, and betting, and typically make up a relatively small and volatile portion of state and local and, to a lesser extent, federal tax collections. es on food and beverage seems to be a trend now in state and local taxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. ation. Those areas with some of the worst business tax climates and/or highest tax burdens seem to be jumping first:

An interesting note: the D.C. proposal and probably others base the tax on the amount of beverage a concentrated powder would produce. So a 19-ounce canister of lemonade powder, for instance, would face a tax of $2.56 based on the D.C. formula.

More on food and beverage taxes here.