Shops 'Wrongly' Told To Stop Selling Easter Eggs, Trade Body Says
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Many shops have been 'wrongly' been told they cannot sell Easter eggs, according to the Assocation of Convenience Stores (ASC).
The ASC, which represents more than 30,000 shops across the UK, said several convenience stores had been told by council environment health officers to stop selling goods deemed non-essential during lockdown, including chocolate eggs and hot cross buns.
Blaming 'overzealous enforcement and a misreading of the rules', the trade body has since advised shopkeepres to carry on selling a full range of products.
ACS chief executive James Lowman said in a statement: "The government has defined which stores can remain open, and that includes convenience stores, including newsagents and off-licences.
"There is no government definition of which products can be sold within those stores.
"This is overzealous enforcement and a misreading of the rules."
He added: "In the cases where officers have challenged retailers and shoppers in this way, it's brought confusion, distracted retailers in the busiest weeks of their lives and increased the interactions between people at a time when the government is trying to minimise them."
The ACS said it had contacted Buckinghamshire and Surrey Trading Standards, which confirmed that shops could continue to sell all available goods as normal.
Lowman added: "We advise any retailer facing this challenge to continue seeking their normal range, and to contact us with the name of the local authority or police force and officer so we can follow up with them."
Government guidance has stated that supermarkets, off-licences, pharmacies, newsagents and corner shops are all permitted to stay open during the nation's lockdown.
Currently, however, there is no official information on specific products shops can and can't sell.
Takeaways and delivery services are also allowed to run as normal.
In a statement to LADbible, a government spokesperson said: "It remains a decision for individual shops to choose which products they stock.
"Our food industry is working around the clock to ensure the public can access all the food and groceries they need, and we will continue to support them in their response to coronavirus."
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