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How are retailers responding to the changes that EUTPD II and plain packaging will bring their businesses? As part of this week’s Retail Newsagent tobacco feature (24 June), Toby Hill spoke with three retailers to find out
Will you change your range in light of the new regulations?
Hitesh Patel: Gay’s Newsagent, Hertford We’re a traditional tobacconist and people buying eight grams of tobacco or 10-packs of cigarettes provide vital footfall for us. So, as long as suppliers have the products we’ll continue to stock them. Of course, we’ll have to decide carefully at what point we start delisting – we have some specialist tobacco that’s bought by only one or two customers which would be easy to get stuck with.
How are you communicating the changes to your customers?
Eric Jordon: Evenwood News, County Durham
I’ve explained to most of our regular customers that the regulation is already in force. But I don’t think they’ll feel the impact until October, when we’ll stop stocking non-compliant products, by which point we’ll have talked them all through it.
How are you preparing your staff for the changes ahead?
David Worsfold: Farrant’s Newsagent, Cobham, Surrey
We’ve trained all our staff in the new law. We took them aside for an hour or so to explain it to them. As a small retailer we obviously couldn’t train them all at once, we had to stagger it. We encourage them to communicate with our customers, to explain we’ll see a series of price rises over the next year. That way, customers should be less taken aback when they hit.
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