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Sales and Use Tax TAA 12A-030 Dietary Supplement

QUESTION: Whether the sale of a dietary supplement sold in capsule form used for weight

control is exempt from sales tax.

ANSWER: The product submitted for review is a dietary supplement and is exempt under s.

212.08(1), F.S.

December 5, 2012

Re: Technical Assistance Advisement – TAA 12A-030

Dietary Supplement

Taxpayer Name: XXX (“Taxpayer”)

Taxpayer ID Number: XXX

Sales and Use Tax

Section 212.08(1), Florida Statutes (F.S.)

Rule 12A-1.011, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.)

Dear XXX:

This response is in reply to your letter to the Department, dated XXX, in which you are

requesting the Department's issuance of a Technical Assistance Advisement ("TAA") pursuant to

s. 213.22, F.S., and Chapter 12-11, F.A.C., regarding whether the sale of a dietary supplement is

exempt from sales tax as food product under section 212.08(1), F.S. An examination of your

petition has established that you have complied with the statutory and regulatory requirements

for issuance of a TAA. Therefore, the Department is hereby granting your request for issuance

of a TAA.

As provided in s. 213.22(1), F.S., a technical assistance advisement may be issued to a taxpayer

who requests an advisement relating to the exemptions in s. 212.08(1) or (2), F.S., at any time.

Technical assistance advisements shall have no precedential value except to the taxpayer who

requests the advisement and then only for the specific transaction addressed in the technical

assistance advisement, unless specifically stated otherwise in the advisement.

As stated in your letter, Taxpayer is an online retailer of a dietary supplement. The supplement,

XXX, is produced in capsule form and contains chromium, a trace mineral that is essential for

normal protein, fat, and carbohydrate metabolism and is used for weight control by burning fat,

reducing appetite, and increasing energy. The product also contains caffeine, decaffeinated

green tea extract, and ashwagandha root extract. As indicated on the product label, the product is

a “dietary supplement.”

Section 212.08(1), F.S., provides an exemption for “food products” sold for human consumption.

The term “food products,” as defined in s. 212.08(1)(b), F.S., includes edible commodities,

whether processed, cooked, raw, canned, or in any other form, which are generally regarded as


According to the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994, a “dietary

supplement” is a product taken by mouth that contains a dietary ingredient intended to

supplement the diet. The “dietary ingredient” in these products may include: vitamins, minerals,

herbs or other botanicals, amino acids, and substances such as enzymes, organ tissues,

glandulars, and metabolites. Dietary supplements can be found in many forms, including tablets,

capsules, softgels, liquids, and powders. DSHEA places dietary supplements in a special

category under the general umbrella of “foods,” and requires that every supplement be labeled a

dietary supplement.

The Nontaxable Medical and General Grocery List (DR-46NT), incorporated by reference in

Rule 12A-1.097, F.A.C., includes dietary supplements and substitutes, herbal supplements, and

vitamins and mineral supplements as exempt products.

Based on our review of the product, it is exempt from sales tax pursuant to s. 212.08(1), F.S., as

a “food product.”

This response constitutes a Technical Assistance Advisement under s. 213.22, F.S. which is

binding on the department only under facts and circumstances described in the request for this

advice, as specified in s. 213.22, F.S. Our response is predicated on those facts and the specific

situation summarized above. You are advised that subsequent statutory or administrative rule

changes or judicial interpretations of the statutes or rules upon which this advice is based may

subject similar future transactions to a different treatment than expressed in this response.

You are further advised that this response, your request and related backup documents are public

records under Chapter 119, F.S., and are subject to disclosure to the public under the conditions

of s. 213.22, F.S. Confidential information must be deleted before public disclosure. In an effort

to protect confidentiality, we request you provide the undersigned with an edited copy of your

request for Technical Assistance Advisement, the backup material and this response, deleting

names, addresses and any other details which might lead to identification of the taxpayer. Your

response should be received by the Department within 15 days of the date of this letter.

If you have any further questions with regard to this matter and wish to discuss them, you may

contact me directly at (850) 717-7202.


Richard R. Parsons

Tax Law Specialist

Technical Assistance & Dispute Resolution

(850) 717-7202

Record ID: 134209


  • FL Dept. of Revenue
  • ABA
  • FL State Bar

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