Association of Convenience Stores chief executive James Lowman has heralded the benefits of ACS’s new primary authority partnership at a conference of business groups and local authorities.

The ‘primary authority’ scheme, one of the first to be established in the country, is a new partnership between Surrey County Council and ACS.

The scheme is made possible by a change in the law that came into force on 1 October 2013, with the development of primary authority for trade associations supported by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).

Lowman said: “Assured Advice has the potential to make ground-breaking changes in the way that convenience stores look at compliance procedures and their relationships with trading standards and environmental health.

“We are delighted to be able to offer this opportunity for our members to benefit from the type of certainty over their compliance procedures previously only afforded to multiple chains.”

Lowman was speaking as part of a seminar on Primary Authority hosted by an arm of the BIS, the Better Regulation Delivery Office, at the Trading Standards Institute conference.