Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Sainsbury bid to avoid health levy by not selling tobacco?

Sainsbury's has stopped selling tobacco in some of its Scottish stores in a bid to avoid a 'health levy', to be applied to stores that sell tobacco and alcohol. I don't see how this gets them out of paying the levy if they continue to sell alcohol.

Can anyone help?


Jay said...

You're right, it doesn't address the health levy. This is an experiment to see how people respond to the stores not selling tobacco products. Will people stop coming to their stores? Will people impulse buy less at the counter? Will purchasing habits change? What about home deliveries of shopping?

Those are the questions they're trying to find out, and if the lack of tobacco sales do not hurt their profits overall, then they'll extend the ban to stores in England and Wales ... Wales being first, of course.

I also suspect that someone on the board of Sainsbury's is involved with Public Health... would need to confirm that...

EPC(Peter) said...

I used to frequent one of the stores they used for their trial (Craighall, in Edinburgh). Once they stopped selling tobacco I started using a different supermarket...not difficult as there is a Waitress and a couple of Morrison's nearby.
The only logic I can see to justify this move is if the health levy is on a sliding scale; more if they sell tobacco AND alcohol, less if they sell just alcohol!

evelyn said...

The legislation says that the levy applys to shops licenced to sell alcohol AND tobacco.By not selling tobacco do these retailers avoid having to pay it on their alcohol?