RGDATA Submission on Tobacco Consultation
RGDATA members are extremely concerned at the proposal to introduce a new licensing system for the sale of tobacco products.
In its submission on the proposed new tobacco regulations, RGDATA raises concerns that a proposal to introduce a new licencing system for the retail sale of tobacco products would be an unnecessary and costly regulatory burden for retailers in the context of the current functioning regime.
“There is no evidence to suggest that the current registration system is not working effectively and the sanctions that exist for non-compliance with the rules on the sale of tobacco are already strong and penal,” says Tara Buckley, Director General, RGDATA.
“No evidence has been provided to demonstrate the inadequacy or lack of effectiveness of the current structures, which were introduced relatively recently,” says Buckley.
Buckley continued: “The proposed cost structures for the licence have not been revealed but hard pressed retailers see this proposal as totally unjustified and merely a revenue raising initiative rather than a genuine or required tobacco control initiative”.
RGDATA made further comments in their submission as follows:
- RGDATA supports measures to prevent the sale of tobacco products from mobile or temporary premises. RGDATA agrees that it is right and proper that tobacco products should only be sold from permanent premises which operate as a retail outlet and as such have permanent structures and processes in place to facilitate compliance with the relevant tobacco control legislation.
- RGDATA also supports the banning of the sale of tobacco products and e cigarettes at events directed at minors.
- RGDATA supports a registration system for e cigarettes. Tobacco retailers are aware of their compliance obligations under the law and take significant steps to ensure compliance. It is similarly appropriate that the sale of non-medicinal nicotine delivery systems (including e-cigarettes) should be confined to registered, reputable and established retailers experienced in the sale of regulated and controlled products.
- RGDATA is not opposed to the proposal to ban the sale of tobacco products by persons under 18. However legislators should note that this will have an impact on people under 18 seeking to get work in shops. The local shop has traditionally delivered the first job to many young people and students. A ban on people under 18 selling tobacco products in shops will negatively impact on casual employment for this cohort of people as shop owners will stop employing under 18s.
- RGDATA does not oppose the proposed banning of the sale of tobacco products from self service vending machines and from temporary or mobile units and containers.
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RGDATA: The Retail Grocery Dairy & Allied Trades Association is the representative association for over 4,000 independent family owned grocery shops, convenience stores, forecourt stores and supermarkets in Ireland.
RGDATA is the longest established retail trade association representing the independent grocery sector for over 70 years.