mango: High Court rules mango pulp be taxed at 12%

The Andhra Pradesh High Court has ruled that mango pulp be taxed at 12% under GST as per the existing regulations and framework. The court said that the Appellate Authority for Advance Ruling’s decision to impose GST on mango pulp at 18% was incorrect.

Earlier, exporters and businessmen faced problems due to confusion in rates on different forms of mango, like sliced, dried mangoes or mango pulp.

“The court has rightly given weightage to the circular pursuant to the GST council meeting, where it was clarified that mango pulp is liable to GST at 12%,” said Harpreet Singh, indirect tax partner at KPMG in India.

The court also directed the revenue authorities not to take any “coercive action” for recovering 18% GST on mango pulp.

Going ahead, fresh mangoes sold as a fruit will attract no GST. While sliced and dried mangoes will face 5% GST. “The interesting thing to note is that, under GST laws, a particular product in different forms can attract different GST rates. Similarly, there are varied rates for meat, i.e., raw meat, canned meat, etc. Another example could be milk; fresh milk attracts GST at nil rates, UHT (ultra-heat treatment) milk at 5%, and condensed or flavoured milk is chargeable at higher rates,” said Singh.

Earlier too, several AARs have ruled on GST applicable on food items. So, parata is not similar to paratha, but naan and a samosa eaten over the counter and on a chair outside the shop probably taste different as they should be taxed differently. Many other AARs include whether a cookie wrapped in chocolate is a cookie or a chocolate wrapped around a wafer biscuit is a biscuit, ET reported earlier.

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