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Age restricted sales

We are committed to working to reduce the supply of age-restricted products such as alcohol, tobacco, solvents and fireworks to underage people.

We are working to help all retailers of age restricted products to be more aware of their responsibilities and the consequences of selling these products to underage customers. 

If you're a retailer, you should be aware that we conduct regular test purchasing operations to identify retailers who sell to underage people.

If you sell to an underage person you face the prospect of court action. You and your staff members can be fined up to £5,000 for selling age restricted products to underage people, and in some instances you can lose your licence to sell alcohol.

Preventing underage sales

Business Companion provides a guide to underage sales. It covers the age restrictions that apply to the sale of certain products and services, including alcohol, tobacco, blades, solvents and sunbeds, as well as offering advice on how to prevent underage sales.

We recommend the Challenge 25 policy, which encourages retailers to challenge anybody who looks under 25 for proof of age. A guide to adopting Challenge 25 can be downloaded from the Wine and Spirit Trade Association website.