Proxy purchasing

In the Responsible Retailing Week roundtable, proxy purchasing was identified as a major challenge for store owners. Concerns were raised about vulnerable customers, that are over the age of 18, being asked to buy age-restricted products which puts both the individual and the store in jeopardy.

Under current legislation, the guilty proxy purchaser could receive a prison sentence of up to three months and/or a £5,000 fine, while the retailer themselves could also face fines or lose their licence.

To help avoid these situations, retailers have access to guidance designed to help them tackle the proxy purchasing of alcohol, which can land them with a fine and or a license revocation.

Developed by the Retail Alcohol Standards Group (RASG), the guidance is available for free online and includes common scenarios where proxy sales occur, as well as tips to ensure that legitimate sales are not negatively affected. The guidance can be downloaded here.