How we monitor retailers for compliance

Birmingham Trading Standards have joined forces with the Department of Health to prevent illegal sales in Birmingham. This is aimed at any trader who sells tobacco or alcohol in Birmingham.

We are carrying out visits to traders to issue information packs which provide information on age restricted sales, related health issues, smokefree legislation, what to do to comply with the law and also how to avoid buying illicit goods which could be passed on to other consumers.

Download the ‘Preventing Illegal Sales’ pack

Underage sales testing (mystery shopping)

We conduct tests on businesses, using child volunteers, to find out which traders are selling age restricted goods to children. The tests, which are carried out using strict national guidelines, are undertaken to ensure traders are complying with the law. If a trader sells to the child volunteer, an investigation will take place which may involve legal action being taken.

Volunteer to be a mystery shopper

If you’re aged from 14 to 16 years and are interested in volunteering as a mystery shopper, email us at, and we will arrange a meeting with your parent/guardian. More information is available in our leaflet.

Download the 'Youth Volunteering' leaflet

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