Sales of age restricted products (underage sales)

'Age restricted products' refers to products which can affect the health and wellbeing of young people.

Examples of these products include:

  • tobacco and nicotine inhaling products
  • aerosol spray paints
  • alcohol
  • cigarette lighter refills and solvents
  • crossbows, air weapons, etc
  • fireworks
  • knives and other bladed items
  • sunbeds
  • video recordings and games for sale and hire

‘Underage sales’ is commonly used to describe the illegal supply of these products to young people.

Redbridge Trading Standards enforce the laws prohibiting the sale of age restricted products to underage children. This helps to prevent anti-social behaviour, minimises risks to health and improves the safety of the community. ‘Test purchases’ enable us to monitor whether traders are complying with the laws on underage sales.

Report underage sales to us

If you suspect that a shop in Redbridge is selling any age-restricted goods to children, you can report them by contacting the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06 who will passed the details to us.

Please provide the following information when you report it:

  • the type of age restricted product (e.g. alcohol, knives, cigarettes)
  • the name and address of the business you are reporting
  • when the underage sale was made
  • how old you believe the buyer was

We will investigate the complaint and, if necessary, arrange a properly supervised 'test purchase'.

What are the age limits for different products?

Age limits for different age-restricted products can be found on the Business Companion website.

What information is available for specific age-restricted products?

The ACS website provides detailed information on what prohibitions there are on the minimum age of buyers.

How do I avoid problems when selling age-restricted products on the internet?

Further information and guidance on how to protect yourself and your business when selling age-restricted products online can be found on the Business Companion websiteIt provides practical advice on how to avoid selling knives on the internet to those aged under 18. This advice will also be useful if you sell other age restricted products.

Proof of age cards

CitizenCard has teamed up with digital identity app Yoti to offer a new Yoti CitizenCard. The card displays a PASS (Proof of Age Standards Scheme) hologram endorsed by the Home Office. National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) and the Home Office Security Industry Authority (SIA) logos are also displayed on Yoti CitizenCards.

Trading Standards is working in conjunction with the Yoti CitizenCard scheme and many schools in the area are being encouraged to issue these cards to their pupils.  To obtain the Yoti CitizenCards, they can register directly for them by emailing or to find out more visit the CitizenCard website. 


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