Is this the beginning of the end of Tampon Tax?

Posted on: 30 July 2017

It finally seems like the fight to end the unfair and misguided ‘Tampon Tax’ could be coming to a positive conclusion. Just two days ago Tesco announced price cuts for its tampon products, and now the praiseworthy work of the UK’s largest supermarket is being backed by MP Paula Sheriff. Her encouragement of other retailers to follow suit makes perfect sense to us at Freda. For far too long have tampons and pads been perceived as a luxury and not a must-have. At Freda, we have absorbed the 5% tax on all our sanitary products.

The burdening tampon tax does not just put a strain on your pocket; it also accentuates and perpetuates the idea that sanitary products are non-essentials and is seen by campaigners as just another example of gender bias.

In this way, we stand with Michelle McEttrick, Tesco’s group brand director, who said: “For many of our customers, tampons, panty liners and sanitary towels are essential products. However, the cost of buying them every month can add up, and, for many women and girls, it can be a real struggle on top of other essential items.”

Nonetheless, despite Tesco’s latest move, the fight is not over.

In a world of political complications, which allows, in the words of Paula Sheriff, big companies to boost “their bottom line at the expense of women buying what are essential goods”, the power of an ethical, transparent start-up like Freda is clear to see. Our plan is to storm the mainstream and say a firm ‘No!’ to harmful, entrenched stigmas.

What is the situation in other countries?

Currently, the tax is imposed on sanitary products in most of the world, with the exception of a handful of countries, including Ireland, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Tanzania, Lebanon, Kenya, recently joined by Canada.

Australia: 10%

France: 20%

Hungary: 27%

Denmark, Sweden and Norway: 25%

Germany: 19%

Italy: 22%

Slovakia: 20%

Greece: 23%

We congratulate Tesco on leading the way. There is still so much more work to do and we truly believe that Freda can be the driving force to end this battle.

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