Budget brings tax credit to farmers who donate crops

Lettuce turnip the beet for charitable farmers

Budget brings tax credit to farmers who donate crops
Sam Kean

There's good news in today's budget for food-growing Nova Scotians. Farmers who donate surplus crops to registered charities feeding people in need— like Feed Nova Scotia—may now claim a refundable tax credit of 25 percent. Feed Nova Scotia was all in, of course, as the charity distributes a large amount of food to their member network of approximately 147 food banks and meal programs province-wide.

The Food Bank Tax Credit for Farmers came into effect on January 1, 2016. As it reads on page 33 of 96 in the budget, “The tax credit must be claimed in the same year that a charitable donation tax credit or deduction is claimed for the donation."

Health minister Leo Glavine has been a big proponent of this idea. Back in 2013, when he was in opposition, Glavine advanced a private member's bill to revise the Income Tax Act. He pushed to table a 25 percent tax credit to individuals and corporations that donate to food banks. However, this bill never passed its first reading.