Cigarettes are disappearing from view

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TOBACCO product displays are to be banned in shops, Warwickshire County Council’s Trading Standards Service has announced.

The ban, which Trading Standards Officers will enforce across the county, comes into force from April 6, 2012 and will initially affect large stores with a relevant floor area exceeding 280 square metres.

Warwickshire County Councillor Richard Hobbs, Portfolio Holder for Community Protection said: “Smoking is an addiction that often starts in childhood.

Most people who smoke start before they reach the age of 18.”

“The ban will put cigarettes out of the sight of children in shops. The Government hopes that this will discourage children from starting smoking in the first place, saving lives and improving health.”

All other shops and businesses selling tobacco products will be affected from 6 April 2015.

Warwickshire Trading Standards Service has put together a basic guide for retailers on what they need to do. More comprehensive information is available on our website:

http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/fairtrading

Guidance for businesses

From 6 April 2012, a new law will affect stores that are over 280 square metres selling tobacco products. The rules do not prescribe how you cover your unit as long as the maximum display area is less than 1.5m2. Stores may then use a curtain, a sliding door, under or over counter storage or another solution.

· Other than when serving a customer with a tobacco purchase, a tobacco display may be open and visible to customers for re-stocking, repair or maintenance, cleaning or staff training.

· Retailers must not open the tobacco unit at the request of a person under the age of 18 or open the unit to retrieve or display anything other than tobacco products (for example you cannot display lighters in it).

· Only three types of price list and labels for tobacco products are permitted: an A3 poster, a counter tobacco catalogue or price labels on covered shelving or the front of the storage unit. The size and visual look of price lists is limited.

This information is a brief summary of the law. It is not an authoritative document on the law and is only intended for guidance. For further advice, please contact Trading Standards.