lllicit alcohol sales can only be fully tackled if retailers report cases directly to the authorities.

That was the advice from Russ Dymond, beer & cider buyer for Bargain Booze owner Conviviality. Speaking at the Drinks at Home conference earlier this month, he said: “If a store reports incidents of illicit alcohol, it’s more effective than if we do it at head office.

“If we report 300 cases of illicit trading then it’s seen as one report, but if 300 retailers do it, it counts as 300. It’s not going to get any better if you don’t report it.”

Phil Dickson, owner of several Bargain Booze stores, told Retail Express: “It’s important for individual retailers to report directly to the authorities. Even my local MP isn’t aware that Bargain Booze is a franchise and that this issue effects local people at a local level.”