Lunch just got a whole lot more costly as VAT will now apply to all hot food – not just hot food sold by takeaway chains – and so will hit supermarkets and chains such as Greggs. 

This will see a sausage roll go up by 18p and a pasty incur a 30p rise, and a £5 hot rotisserie chicken in a supermarket will go up by £1. 

The new rules stipulate that VAT will be added to all food that is ‘above the ambient air temperature at the time they are provided to the customer’. However, stores are allowed to sell pies, pasties, toasted sandwiches and all so long as they are cold.