Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Marc Mac Sharry has welcomed news that the Revenue Commissioners have suspended the imposition of VAT at 23% on food supplements which was due to commence in two days.

 Deputy Mac Sharry commented “It is welcome that the Minister has decided to examine the policy surrounding taxation on food supplements. My constituents in Sligo-Leitrim who use these products were facing significant cost increases.

 The majority of people take these food supplements in a bid to live healthier lives, and any increase in the cost of them could see people forced to give them up. People should not be punished for trying to lead healthier lives.

“There was also substantial fear from health food shop owners in the North West region regarding this proposed tax. It was clear that this would have a detrimental effect on their business and we cannot afford any business closures in our area, which already bears the brunt of regional imbalance.

“I will continue to follow up with both revenue and the Minister for Finance to seek that the implementation of this tax is permanently halted for the consumers and business owners in the health food industry” concluded Deputy MacSharry.