Our trading standards team is at the frontline of consumer and business protection.
It deals with issues that affect everyone, such as falsely described or counterfeit goods, underage sales, loan sharks, misleading prices and uninvited doorstep sellers.
It is committed to working with business to:
- help businesses to understand and comply with regulations and cut red tape;
- ensure that businesses compete with one another on level terms; and
- promote consistency in the approach to enforcement.
Reporting traders selling counterfeit goods
If you suspect that counterfeit goods are being sold, contact the Citizens Advice consumer service or by calling 03454 040506, who will investigate the complaint and react accordingly. General points which should raise suspicion are:
- quality - inferior quality of the product and packaging;
- pricing - dramatically reduced prices;
- designer clothing - the trader needs to be authorised by the trademark holder to sell such goods, so items like Gucci or Prada would raise suspicion if sold at a market or car boot sale.
Ensuring goods you purchase are genuine
Buy your stock only from reputable wholesalers and ensure you have a receipt describing the goods. Do not buy goods from people who approach your stall, no matter how good a bargain it seems. Bear in mind that some brands are only ever sold in their own shops. Other brands are restrictive about who sells their goods, so the goods are unlikely ever to be on sale in a general wholesaler's or from the back of a van.
Business loss from traders selling counterfeits goods
The impact on retailers is one of the reasons that Trading Standards takes counterfeiting so seriously. This is also something the courts recognise when dealing with counterfeiters.
Fair trading and pricing - advice and guidance
For Trading Standards business advice, please contact us and we will be happy to help.