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April 15, 2024

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August to be Tax-Free for Groceries in Tennessee

After the back to school sales tax holiday July 29 - 31, Tennessee is extending the holiday for groceries through August!

Although it seems like summer just ended, it’s time to think about back-to-school — which typically means a lot of shopping and trips to the store. But there’s good news for those looking for a little relief in the spending madness.

Earlier this year, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced his plans for a 30-day suspension of state and local grocery sales tax to provide direct financial relief to Tennesseans amid surging inflation nationwide. That sales tax holiday will take place all next month in August after Tennessee’s traditional sales tax holiday, which begins at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, July 29, 2022, and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 31, 2022.

“As Americans see their cost-of-living skyrocket amid historic inflation, suspending the grocery tax is the most effective way to provide direct relief to every Tennessean,” said Gov. Lee.

About the Grocery Sales Tax Holiday

The temporary suspension of the tax on groceries will start at 12:01 a.m. on Monday, August 1, 2022, and end at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, August 31, 2022. During this period, food and food ingredients may be purchased tax free throughout Tennessee. However, food and food ingredients purchased from a micro market or vending machine remain subject to sales tax.

“Food and food ingredients” are defined as liquid, concentrated, solid, frozen, dried or dehydrated substances that are sold to be ingested or chewed by humans and are consumed for their taste or nutritional value.

About the Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday 

During Tennessee’s traditional sales tax holiday, clothing, school supplies and computers may be purchased tax-free. Certain restrictions apply. Items sold online are also eligible. Items must be purchased for personal use, not for business or trade.

Examples of tax-exempt school supplies include:

School and art supplies with a purchase price of $100 or less per item (such as binders, backpacks, crayons, paper, pens, pencils, and rulers, and art supplies such as glazes, clay, paints, drawing pads, and artist paintbrushes.

However, school and art supplies individually priced at more than $100 are not exempt and items that are normally sold together cannot be split up to stay beneath the $100 maximum. 

Examples of tax-exempt clothing items include:

General apparel that costs $100 or less per item, such as shirts, pants, socks, shoes, dresses, etc.

Items over $100 are not exempt and, just like school supplies – items sold together cannot be split up to stay beneath the $100 maximum. Also, jewelry, handbags, or sports and recreational equipment are not tax exempt.

Examples of tax-exempt computer items include:

Computers (including laptops and tablets) for personal use with a purchase price of $1,500 or less are tax exempt. However, items such as flash drives, individually purchased software and printer supplies are not tax exempt.

Click here for a list of all the exempt items. Click here for a list of all non-exempt items.




About the Author

Michael Aldrich

Michael Aldrich is Nashville Parent's Managing Editor and a Middle Tennessee arts writer. He and his wife, Alison, are the proud parents of 4-year-old Ezra and baby Norah.