Frequently Asked Questions

Which products are taxed?

It has been dubbed a “soda tax” but it actually applies to many more beverages than just soda pop. Any beverage, carbonated or not that has more than 40 calories per 12 ounce serving (and is not 100% juice) is subject to the beverage tax. This includes any beverage with an added sugary sweetener including lemonade, cranberry juice, sweet tea, etc. whether it’s a syrup, bottled or canned product.

What does it not cover?

Any drink that is below 40 calories per 12 ounce serving or is 100% juice is non- taxable. Therefore, low calorie or diet drinks and other unsweetened beverages would not be taxed. Milk, coffee and unsweet tea are also not subject to a tax.

How much is the tax?

The tax is 1.75 cents per finished ounce of product. For example, the tax on a 5 gallon box of syrup would be calculated on the amount of soda that the box would actually make, which is 30 gallons.

Sample calculations:
5 gallon box—-makes 30 gallons x 1.75 cents per ounce, equals a tax of $67.55 per box.
3 gallon box—-makes 18 gallons x 1.75 cents per ounce, equals a tax of $40.32 per box.

Who has to pay?

Any retail food establishment within Seattle City limits is subject to the Seattle Beverage Tax. The tax is collected by the Distributor, who is required to pay the city.

When does it begin?

January 1st, 2018. All qualified purchases after January 1, 2018 are taxable.

Suppose I pick it up outside the City Limits?

If establishments pick it up outside city limits, they technically become the “Distributor” and then pay the city directly.

So What are My Options?

Good News!!! Healthy, non-taxable alternatives.

Natural Wave Beverages has been at the forefront of this issue from the beginning and we have developed healthier, great tasting fountain alternatives for you to serve your customers!!!

These include:
100% juice Lemonade (No tax.)
100% juice Cranberry (No tax.)
100% juice Sweet and Sour Mix (No tax.)
100% juice Pineapple (No tax.)
100% juice Bloody Mary (No tax.)

Low Calorie Colas, Lemon Limes, Ginger Ales, Tonic water, Root Beer, Ginger Beer, Orange Soda, and even Energy drinks!!! (No tax.)

These are all a part of our new:
– Seattle Lite and Healthy Soda Line. (No tax.)
– We also have: Diet Dr. Pepper, Diet 7up and more!!! (No tax.)

Heading into 2018 you can:
Serve your customers a healthier, great tasting drink at a price they (and you) will like!!!