On December 16, 2016, the Virginia Department of Taxation published final guidelines on its website for the Food Crop Donation Tax Credit, established by state legislation earlier this year.
The guidelines are at tax.virginia.gov/content/food-crop-donation-tax-credit-guidelines.
The credit applies to farmers who make food crop donations to a nonprofit food bank. It took effect July 1, will last through 2020 and is equal to 30 percent of the fair market value of a donation, not to exceed $5,000. It originated with HB 1093, introduced by Del. Benjamin Cline, R-Amherst, and SB 580, introduced by Sen. R. Creigh Deeds, D-Bath.
The bills defined food crops as grains, fruits, nuts or vegetables. They received support from Virginia’s first lady, Dorothy McAuliffe, who has focused efforts on addressing childhood hunger and improving Virginians’ access to fresh and local foods. They also were supported by Virginia Farm Bureau Federation for their potential to benefit both farmers and Virginians in need of food.
“We believe this is a great way to encourage the farming community to help others by donating crops to their local food banks, whether it be surplus products or products they would normally sell elsewhere,” said Andrew Smith, VFBF senior assistant director of governmental relations.
For the 2016 tax year, donors have until February 1 to apply for the credit using the Department of Taxation’s Form FCD-1.