Trading Standards


Business, employment and coronavirus
National advice on loans, grants, furlough and which businesses can reopen and how. Also details of local support from the Business East Sussex Growth Hub.

See also: Important information for our contracted suppliers

Trading Standards protects consumers and traders in East Sussex (excluding Brighton & Hove). To do this we:

  • enforce government legislation
  • offer advice to businesses and consumers
  • provide licences and inspections for businesses
  • investigate offences and prosecute offenders.

Under a National Government initiative, consumer and general business advice is provided by fully trained staff at the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on behalf of Trading Standards.

Their helpline is open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm – contact them on 0808 223 1133 or by email using this online form.

Citizens Advice Consumer Service

Our responsibilities

Some of the areas we are responsible for include:

  • advertising and description of goods or services
  • safety of consumer goods
  • estate agents
  • food labelling, inspections and sampling
  • weights and measures equipment, including weighbridges
  • hallmarking and counterfeit goods
  • animal health
  • petroleum storage certificates
  • underage sales.

Read about how we enforce the law and our food legislation responsibilities:

Information for consumers

We are not able to:

  • demand refunds, replacements or apologies from traders or close them down
  • take court action on your behalf
  • pursue an unjustifiable complaint
  • divulge trader information.

Information for businesses – inspections

There are over 15,000 business premises in East Sussex. These include farms, wholesalers, importers and manufacturers and high street businesses (consisting of both national chains and local retailers).

Many businesses might only be visited every five years, although those regarded as high risk (such as food manufacturers) may be visited several times in one year. Further visits may be made when a complaint has been received, and especially if a trader asks us for advice.

Visits allow us to sample and test products, and give traders an opportunity to ask questions and reassure themselves that they are trading fairly.

Who we work with

We work closely with a wide range of other agencies and organisations, including: