UK retailers must take part in the latest tobacco consultation and defend their right to display tobacco or suffer the severe consequences of lost business, Dave Bryans, president of the Canadian Assocation of Convenience Stores, has warned. Canada’s most densely populated province - Ontario - ’went dark’ in May, as part of a national

roll-out,because retailers hadn’t fought hard enough to prevent it, claimed Bryans.

He predicts that 30% of Canada’s small retailers will go out of business in the next five years as a result of the ban on tobacco displays.

"Let what happened in Canada be a lesson to UK retailers," he said. "You need to take this situation more seriously. Start campaigning earlier, and fight your rights to do legitimate business."

Retailers are being advised to write with their views to the minister in charge - Dawn Primarolo.