Major supermarkets have pledged to pass on tax cuts for women’s sanitary products thanks to pressure by a Kirklees MP.

Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff, whose campaign against the ‘tampon tax’ recently saw the government forced to amend the Budget in order to provide for a zero-rate of VAT on women’s sanitary products, has unveiled a deal with Britain’s largest retailers which will see them guarantee to pass on the tax cut in full to female consumers as soon as the government implements the cut.

The agreement was reached with Tesco, Sainsbury’s, ASDA, Morrisons, Waitrose and Boots, all of whom have now provided Ms Sherriff with formal written pledges to pass on the price cut in full. The five supermarkets between them have 76.9% of the UK grocery retail market share, while Boots UK is Britain’s largest pharmacy group.

Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff speaking in the House of Commons

She welcomed the voluntary deal, but called on the government to commit to a firm deadline for abolishing the tax. The draft Finance Bill only provides powers for ministers to zero-rate women’s sanitary products in future, should they decide to do so. Ms Sherriff has committed to tabling an amendment to the Finance Bill to set a clear deadline for implementation.

She pledged to pursue a similar deal with smaller retailers and manufacturers.

READ MORE: Ex-councillor says Kirklees Council "lost" his council tax cash

READ MORE: University of Huddersfield slammed by judge on tax avoidance scheme

She said: “I’m delighted to have reached this agreement with Britain’s largest retailers that they will guarantee to pass on the tampon tax cut at the point of sale. It would be completely unacceptable if this measure just led to big businesses boosting their bottom line at the expense of women buying what are essential goods. So I’ll be pressing some of the smaller chains to sign up to the same deal and for the manufacturers to recognise the cut in their recommended retail price. With retailers coming on board, the onus is also now back on the government to set a final deadline by which the tampon tax will be abolished.”