Removing the sales tax from groceries could benefit low-income families in Utah

February 8, 2023

A proposal to remove the sales and use tax from groceries was re-introduced in this year’s legislative session. HB172 would remove the sales tax on food items which currently sits at 3%.

With rising inflation, sales tax on food is a greater strain on low-income families. Low-income families spend as much as 36% of their total budget on groceries compared to the much lower average of 7.6% for high-income families according to the USDA.

If the sales tax on food was removed, an average family of 4 in Utah spending about $253 per person per month would save $91.00 per year. For many Utah families whose household size is much larger than 4, these savings would be much higher.

According to, only 3 states levy mandatory, statewide, local add-on sales taxes: California (7.25%), Utah (3%), and Virginia (1%). The remaining states have either exempted state sales tax on groceries, included the tax in the base sales tax, or have removed it completely.

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