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New legal requirements to restrict tobacco displays

40Tower Hamlets Council is reminding retailers that all displays of tobacco products must be covered up from April 6, 2015.
New legal requirements mean that all businesses must hide from public view any tobacco products they sell. There are also specific rules for how you display the prices of tobacco products.
Large retailers have had to cover tobacco displays since 2012 and now the law is coming into force for small and medium businesses.
The new law applies to all businesses selling tobacco products to the public, not just shops but also licensed premises such as pubs and clubs.
It will also be illegal to display adverts of tobacco products. Retailers have been allowed a single A5 advertisement to be displayed at each point of sale for tobacco products.
Once tobacco displays are removed from sight these A5 adverts will no longer be permitted.
It now means it will be illegal to show, as well as to sell, tobacco products to any customer under the age of 18 years. Retailers are reminded to always ask for ID before displaying products to a customer.
The law will allow temporary displays of tobacco products in some circumstances such as when someone over 18 requests to buy or see tobacco products or when staff show products when re-stocking, for example.
Non-compliance with the new law is a criminal offence. Any person, including shop managers and shop assistants, found guilty of these offences is liable.
The council is calling on all retailers to ensure all staff are trained in the changes, so that there are no unlawful displays of tobacco products after April 6, especially to customers aged under 18 years of age. The Tower Hamlets Underage Sales & Responsible Trader Scheme can provide tools to help your business avoid underage sales.