Autumn statement: Tobacco licensing is costly, bureaucratic and unnecessary

Business rates have dominated the retail industry’s reaction to the Autumn Statement this week, and you can see what we have said here.  I wanted to use this blog to talk about another issue, buried deep in the papers accompanying the Chancellor’s speech: tobacco licensing.  The Autumn Statement includes a commitment to consult on whether to introduce a licensing system for vendors of tobacco, which could include local shops.  The government say (and I believe them) that they approach th

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Wales Proposes the Introduction of Tobacco and E-Cig Retailer Register

The Welsh Government has introduced new plans to create a national retailers register of tobacco and nicotine products, including e-cigarettes and tobacco papers.

This proposal featured in the Public Health Bill (Wales) which was initiated into the National Assembly for Wales yesterday. The Bill also includes proposals to make the proxy purchase of tobacco and nicotine products illegal, meaning an adult cannot buy tobacco products on behalf of a person under the age of 18.

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Tobacco Display Ban: Frequently Asked Questions

The Tobacco Display Ban came into effect for all small stores on 6th April 2015 meaning that it is now illegal to display tobacco products to customers, unless a display is requested by someone over the age of 18.

Since the implementation of the ban, ACS has worked closely with retailers to ensure all convenience stores comply with and fully understand the new regulations. As part of their work to help retailers know what they can and can’t do under the new law, ACS has produced a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) and their answers.

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How Well Do You Know the Tobacco Display Ban Regulations?

ACS is encouraging retailers to follow Assured Advice on the tobacco display ban to ensure compliance with the regulations. By signing up to Assured Advice (free of charge for ACS members), retailers cannot be challenged by local enforcement agencies if they are following the guidance set out through Assured Advice.

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MPs Approve Plain Packaging Regulations

Regulations enforcing standardised tobacco packaging have been approved by MPs by 367 to 113, majority 254, in a free vote in the House of Commons.

Peers will be asked to vote on the regulations on Monday and, if they approve them, the new rules will come into force in May 2016.

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ACS Supports Proposed Age Restriction for E-Cigarettes

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has responded to a consultation by the Department of Health, supporting the proposed restriction of 18 years of age for the sale of nicotine inhaling products, such as electronic cigarettes.

The proposed regulations would make it an offence to sell nicotine inhaling products to anyone under the age of 18 and make ‘proxy purchasing’ – adults buying the product for an individual under age – of e-cigarettes illegal.

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Minister Announces Plain Packaging Vote Ahead of General Election

The Government has confirmed that a vote on the introduction of standardised tobacco packaging will take place before Parliament breaks ahead of the General Election.

Health Minister Jane Ellison announced during an evening adjournment debate on Wednesday that the measures would be laid before parliament.

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Government Urged to Reconsider Plans for Tobacco Plain Packs

ACS has called on the Department of Health to look again at the operational impact that plain tobacco packaging would have on retailers.

In its submission, ACS raises concerns that the operational burdens of standardized packaging on retailers have not been fully considered. ACS argues that the removal of branding on tobacco products would make those products more difficult to differentiate, increasing handling and transactions times at every stage.

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