That became painfully obvious during the session's discussions about lifting the sales tax exemption from those sugary treats. Rep. Ross Hunter has a blog post up lamenting the never-ending debate over how to define "candy." It's an important definition because it determines which candy-like items are taxed or not starting June 1.
Hunter alludes to the definition we ultimately adopted, which is the definition established by the Streamlined Sales Tax Board, a national group that works to simplify taxes across state borders. Hunter serves on the board.
Page 124 of the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement lays it out. Essentially, it comes down to whether the product contains flour.
“Candy” means a preparation of sugar, honey, or other natural or artificial sweeteners in combination with chocolate, fruits, nuts or other ingredients or flavorings in the form of bars, drops, or pieces. “Candy” shall not include any preparation containing flour and shall require no refrigeration.So that's why Junior Mints will be taxed, but not Nestle Crunch.
You can check out the full list of what's on the candy list here by clicking on the box next to candy and gum sales tax. (Warning: It's a very complete and thorough list arranged by candy manufacturer. Do not read on an empty stomach.).