'New tax could hit gardeners pockets'

From today, a payment similar to the eco tax on white goods will be due on plants, flowers and trees

31 March 2014
By

SAVING money by growing your own fruit and vegetables is set to become more difficult, as a green tax similar to the one on all white goods sold in France is added to sales of flowers, plants and trees.

From today, already restricted household budgets will be squeezed even further as prices at garden centres and on market stalls rise due to the new tax.

And it’s not only gardeners who are furious, as they look forward to next month's plant markets across France. The complex system of calculating the tax, which varies according to the plant and its size when fully grown, has angered many businesses.

Avril Pêcheur, who runs a plant stall at the market in Caen, told The Connexion: “The law is so complex. Calculating the price increase is a nightmare.

“Flowers are taxed at 4%, pot plants a variable rate depending on the size of the pot. Trees that grow up to 2m are taxed at 8%, and those that grow higher at 9%.”

Home gardeners are also furious, as the law makes a distinction between fruit and vegetables. While all vegetables, including salads are taxed at just 2.5%, fruit has been classed as a luxury item and has been hit with a 14.5% hike. It means the cost of tomato and cucumber plants is set to rocket.

However, owing to a loophole in the legislation, succulents are currently exempt from the tax - although the government is expected to correct that oversight shortly, maybe even by lunchtime.

Update April 4, 2014.
The above article is, of course, The Connexion's own April Fool, we trust you enjoyed it!

Photo: La Petite Vie

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