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GlaxoSmithKline Services Unlimited v HMRC

In GlaxoSmithKline Services Unlimited v HMRC (Upper Tribunal – 10 November) a company (G) manufactured a drink which it called ‘Lucozade Sport’. It contained carbohydrates and electrolytes and was marketed for sale to people participating in high-intensity sport and exercise. HMRC issued a ruling that G was required to account for VAT on its sales of the product. G appealed contending that even though the product was intended to be consumed as a drink it should be treated as food rather than as a beverage and qualified for zero-rating. The First-tier Tribunal rejected this contention and dismissed the appeal holding that the product was within the definition of a beverage and was therefore excluded from zero-rating. The Tribunal specifically distinguished the decision in SIS (Science in Sport) Ltd (VTD 16555) observing that in that case the Tribunal had...

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