Burnley baker’s pasty tax triumph

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A BURNLEY baker has expressed his relief after a government U-turn on the proposed “pasty tax”.

In March, Chancellor George Osborne proposed implementing a 20% VAT rise on food that is served “above ambient room temperature”.

Caterers up and down the country were left baffled by the idea, with many setting up petitions and protests to raise their concerns.

Amongst the protesters was Bill Oddie, owner of family-run firm Oddies, which is now in its 52nd year.

He said: “It is a great relief, and a decision that has been made with common sense. I think the Government has had to think about this very seriously.

“I went to London for the Save our Savouries protest, and there were hundreds of bakers there.

“The chief executive of Greggs, Ken McMeikan, spoke on a megaphone, and he really got the crowd going.

“Bakers have been contacting their MPs, asking for their support, and eventually we have got it.

“The public have also been very supportive, and I am grateful to all my customers – they have been 100% behind us.”

The U-turn only applies to hot food that is allowed to cool naturally.

For companies that keep their pasties under lights or on hot plates, the tax will still apply.