Pricing information

Pricing inspections


A pricing inspection is relatively straightforward.

Trading standards officers will check the prices of a selection of products in your store, this number will depend on the size of the business. If the visit is in connection with a complaint, the inspection will reflect the nature of the complaint.

A Trading standards officer will ensure that the price is accurate and matches price stickers, the price edge label or promotional material. Special attention will also be given to promotional items, such as, “Buy one, get one free”.

Trading Standards officers may require the assistance of a member of staff, who will normally scan the selected products through a checkout and provide the officers with a receipt.

Trading Standards officers carry out inspections discreetly and try to arrange visits at times which are less busy, however, this is not always possible.

What to expect from a Trading Standards visit

Trading Standards’ core function is the protection and promotion of a strong and robust fair trading environment. Trading Standards will sometimes visit your business premise to carry out an inspection and ensure compliance with all relevant rules and regulations.

This visit may be in response to intelligence, such as a consumer or business complaint. Alternatively, this visit may be a routine inspection, carried out as part of a pro-active enforcement project or programme of work.

A visit from Trading Standards does not indicate a presumption of non-compliance but should be viewed as an opportunity to confirm or improve good trading practices.

Most common examples of non-compliance, especially those found during a price inspection, can be remedied with small adjustments. However, on the rare occasion that evidence of more significant non-compliance or rogue trading is discovered, this will be considered by senior trading standards officers, who may recommend formal enforcement outcomes in line with the Trading Standards Service enforcement policy. All Trading Standards visits, regardless of the outcome, will be followed up with a letter.

Identifying Trading Standards Officers

Trading standards officers carry photographic identification, which displays their name and related departmental details. Unlike other parts of the UK, Northern Ireland Trading Standards Service is the only trading standards organisation operating in Northern Ireland.

If you have any concerns, you should contact The Trading Standards Service on Tel: 0300 123 6262.