Three weeks into B.C.'s new harmonized sales tax, retailers and shoppers are still struggling to figure out what's taxable, and what isn't.

Most of the items at Jackson's Meats and Deli in Vancouver are HST-exempt -- but not everything.

Owner Chris Jackson gave CTV News an example: a meat pie. The oven-ready staples are normally tax-exempt.

"If you were to grab one of these meat pies here and just ask us to heat it up with a fork and a napkin so you can eat it right here now? Then we'd have to charge you HST," he said.

Jackson said he isn't charging the tax on soup bones, even though he could.

"If I was to sell it as pet food, I would have to charge the HST, but because it's for cooking, we don't charge it. I think it's a grey area. I'm not exactly sure how it works," he said.

At the deli counter, if you buy all of your items separately and take them home to make a sandwich, Jackson won't charge HST.

But if it's assembled at the store, "Then it's just a like a restaurant. We've made a sandwich for you so now we have to charge you the HST."

Just a few doors down at Cobs Bread, sales manager Blaine MacKinnon says that only small sweet items are taxed.

"There's added sugar to them. They're taxed up until you get about six. Once you get six, the tax is dropped," he explained. The treats are considered luxuries.

Even some of the same items at the bakery don't have the same price. One scone at Cobs cost 18 cents more in tax than the others because it was made with sugar.

With a report from CTV British Columbia's Norma Reid