How Much Tax is in Your Steak?

A good steak is a nice treat but the cost can make it rare no matter how you like it cooked. You see, steaks aren’t only stuffed with protein. They’re also filled with hidden taxes.

First, the farmer who pays taxes on the land, utilities, farm equipment, and of course he pays income taxes on any money that’s left as profit.

Next, the processing plant pays many of the same taxes that the farmer does and the plant’s employees pay taxes on income, social security, and medicare.

If you don’t have a beef with hidden taxes yet, give it time. Our steak is still pretty far away. We’ll need a trucker to get it closer. They pay government in registration and licensing fees, gas taxes, and maybe highway tolls and sales tax on their lunch stop along the way.

But finally, our steak is at the local supermarket and you guessed it…

The supermarket pays taxes too on things like electricity for the coolers to keep the steak fresh. On the employer’s FICA tax for each employee. Maybe a tax to the city where they’re located. And of course any profit that’s left over.

Finally, we fork over our hard-earned money to pay for it. Of course, that money is what’s left over after we’ve paid our state and federal income taxes, social security, medicare, property, utility, gasoline tax, and on and on it goes…

It’s hard to tell just how much in taxes and fees went into that juicy cut of beef because different states and cities have different fees and tax rates. For instance, some states have no income tax. Others are as high as 5%. It’s the same story with property taxes, gas taxes, and utility fees.

Just remember, any way you cut it, the tax man has a lot of hidden stake in your steak and many other parts of your meal.