ST 1994-02 - Fruit Baskets, Holiday Baskets, Decorative
Containers - December, 1994 - UPDATED, November, 2004
The purpose of this release is to reiterate the Department of
Taxation's position regarding the application of sales tax to
the sale of fruit baskets, holiday baskets, and decorative
containers containing food and/or non-food items.
Under Ohio law, sales tax is due on the total price paid when
the amount for a taxable item is not separately stated from
the amount for a nontaxable item.
Fruit baskets, holiday baskets, or decorative containers that
contain a mixture of nontaxable items (fruit, cheese, candy,
etc.) and taxable items (toys, wine, basket or container that
is decorative in nature, etc.) are subject to the sales tax
based on the total amount charged unless the amount for the
nontaxable item(s) is separately stated from the amount for
the taxable item(s). If there is a separation in the price,
only the amount for the taxable item(s) would be subject to
For purposes of this release, a basket or container is
considered "decorative in nature" when the basket or
container has a value greater than the item(s) contained
within or the true object of the purchaser is the acquisition
of the basket or container instead of the item contained
1) A typical Easter or fruit basket full of candy or fruit
(no toys or wine) would not be subject to the sales tax
because the true object sought would be the food items
contained within, not the basket. The basket would be
considered part of a package.
2) A lead crystal candy dish (considered a decorative
container) full of candy would be fully taxable unless
there was a separation in the price between the amount for
the lead crystal candy dish and the amount for the candy.
This price separation would result in taxing only the price
of the lead crystal candy dish.
3) A fruit basket containing wine or champagne would be
fully taxable unless there was a separation in the price
between the amount for the wine or champagne and the amount
for the fruit. This price separation would result in taxing
only the price of the wine or champagne.
If you have any questions regarding this matter, please
contact our Taxpayer Services Center at 1-888-405-4039, or
e-mail us through our website at tax.ohio.gov.
OHIO RELAY SERVICES FOR THE
HEARING AND SPEECH IMPAIRED