FAQ: Donating to the Mustard Museum

The IRS approved the National Mustard Museum’s status as a 501(c)3 exempt organization. This means that donations to the National Mustard Museum are tax-deductible. However, your purchases of mustards and mustard memorabilia at our Museum Gift Shop or online store are not (sorry).

regarding the nonprofit National Mustard Museum:

• Is the Mustard Museum really a nonprofit organization?
Yes. Here is the letter from the IRS confirming its status as a 501(c)3 charitable organization.

• Does that mean that purchases of mustard in the gift shop or online are tax-deductible charitable contributions?
No. The nonprofit National Mustard Museum does not sell mustard. The separate for-profit “MustardMuseum.com, LLC” is in the business of selling mustards.

• Why is the non-profit museum separate from the for-profit business?
Until February 2011, there was only the for-profit, which included the museum and its collection. Operating a museum is expensive and there was no way the for-profit could continue to maintain the museum through selling jars of mustard. The new non-profit incorporated as a Wisconsin not-for-profit corporation in February 2011 and applied for tax-exempt status with the IRS in April.

• I donated to the Mustard Museum earlier this year. Is that donation tax-deductible?
Yes. Donations made after the date of incorporation (February 4, 2011) are deductible even though the IRS did not grant our exemption until November 30, 2011.

• Why does the Mustard Museum need money?
For the same reasons all museums need money. For rent, utilities, acquisitions, maintenance, and capital improvements.

• Who owns the extensive collection of mustards and mustard memorabilia?
Right now the for-profit business owns the collection but the non-profit is in the process of buying it under an asset purchase agreement. It is important for the non-profit to own the collection in case something should happen to the business. The collection is valued at about $120,000 and the non-profit still has about $100,000 to go until it owns it.

• Who owns the building in which the non-profit museum is located?
The building was owned by HP Holdings, a Wisconsin LLC, but it is currently in receivership. The Museum would love to own its own building but that will take some serious money. (Anyone wanna buy a building?)

• How can I donate to the non-profit National Mustard Museum?
You can donate at different levels online (the funds will go to the non-profit National Mustard Museum): $25 (SMM25), $50 (SMM50), $100 (SMM100), $250 (SMM250), $500 (SMM500), $1,000 (SMM1000).

For larger donations, please call the Mustard Museum at 800-438-6878 and ask for Barry Levenson.