Eating things you plan to buy in supermarkets can actually get you in big trouble

Ever decided to tuck into a chocolate bar that you intend on buying as a means of keeping you going whilst doing a ‘big shop’ at the supermarket?

Don’t worry, you’re not the only one.

You may want to wait until you’ve left the shop next time though because, according to Rachel Adamson – Criminal Law Specialist at Adkirk Law in Southport – this actually is against the law and very few people even realise it.

Granted, now that the wearing of a face mask / covering is a mandatory requirement in all supermarkets and shops in England – with fines now sitting at £200 for a first offence (reducing to £100 if paid within 14 days) and increasing to a maximum of £6,400 for repeat offences – tucking into a packet of crisps, cereal bar, some grapes, or whatever your chosen snack is probably not feasible, but it’s right to assume it could be in the future.

Whenever that day comes though, you might want to think twice about it.

Just bear it in mind.


It’s not the only seemingly innocent act that is actually against the law either, as Rachel adds that: “Worryingly, new legislation is also catching people out such as the illegal use of wi-fi, or the illegal downloading of music or certain documents, which now seem entirely natural to do without asking.

“It is also illegal to send unsolicited mail [by post] to another person without their consent under the data protection laws and people have been prosecuted for it.”

She added that we all need to “be careful” and that we should “consider the possible consequences before we engage into some of these things – you could be breaking the law on something important and end up in court.”

“Take advice first if you are in any doubt.”

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