The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has worked with trading standards to provide clarity for local shops about the sale of age-restricted products in relation to customers wearing face masks or face coverings.

When serving customers wearing face masks or face coverings who wish to purchase an age-restricted product in store, retailers should consider the following:

• retailers should continue to enforce Challenge 25 policies;

• where the retailer can’t confidently assess the age of a customer they should refuse the sale;

• where the retailer or staff member believes that the customer is younger than 25, proof of age should be requested;

• The retailer should try and verify the customer in their mask or face covering, but where they cannot confidently verify the age, they should request the mask or face covering is briefly removed, and if the customer is unwilling to do this, the sale should be refused.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “Local shops have made a momentous effort to ensure that they can continue to serve their customers safely and important part of this is the responsible sale of age-restricted products.

“We have received this important clarification from trading standards and this best practice advice will help retailers navigate the sale of age-restricted products in light of the ongoing situation with the coronavirus outbreak.”

ACS has developed a poster for retailers to use in store to communicate Government advice regarding face masks/coverings and the sale of age-restricted products.

The poster can be downloaded here.