Austerity measures in Spain have increased taxes on nearly everything. Tax on theatre tickets was bumped from 8 to 21 percent, and in an already challenging economy, theatre companies were naturally worried about whether higher costs would keep the public away.
In the town of Bescanó, two hours north of Barcelona, one theatre applied their creative smarts to the tax issue and came up with a fresh solution. Rather than selling tickets, the 300-seat Teatre Bescanó began selling carrots.
You see, carrots are considered a staple by the Spanish government, and are therefore taxed at four percent.
“We sell one carrot, which costs 13 euros — very expensive for a carrot,” theatre director Quim Marcé explained on NPR. “But then we give away admission to our shows for free.”
The Spanish government has yet to close the carrot loophole, and there is not yet any indication that they will do so.