Shops should be allowed to go back to selling fruit and vegetables in pounds and ounces following the Brexit vote, say campaigners – The Sun

SHOPS should be allowed to go back to selling fruit and vegetables in pounds and ounces following the Brexit vote, say campaigners.

Ministers are being put under pressure by so-called ‘metric martyrs’ to let traders use imperial measurements ahead of Britain leaving the European Union.

The Telegraph reports that customers have been asking shop owners if they can have their groceries weighed in the old fashioned way, rather than in grams.

The British Weights and Measures Association said “one or two” shops a week had been in contact since the June 23 referendum asking if they could, but said this figure was likely “the tip of a much bigger iceberg”.

A spokesman said: "In 2000, to comply with European legislation, the Government made it a criminal act for a greengrocer to sell a pound of bananas.

"We thought this was outrageous then. We think it outrageous now.

“And with our exit from the EU, the legal basis of compulsory metrication will be repealed. We believe it's now time to restore freedom of choice."

The law says shops can only sell goods in metric, but can display imperial units alongside as a “supplementary indication” and cannot form part of the transaction process.

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Once Britain repeals the European Communities Act 1972 and formally leaves the EU the obligation to display metric measurements should end, but campaigners want to make the change now.

This view is supported by Peter Bone, a Eurosceptic Tory MP, who said: “I always have to translate everything back into pounds and ounces anyway.

“Given that our biggest trading partner by a mile – the United States – is still on imperial measurements it has always been silly that we have had to just do it in metric.

“It makes a lot of sense for people to be able to ask to have products in pounds and ounces – it makes sense and is one of the advantages of coming out of the EU.”

Mr Bone, who is writing to International Trade Secretary Liam Fox to urge him to back the plans, told the Telegraph: “I think it is a first class idea and I hope the Government embraces it.”

A Government spokesman said: “Businesses can already use imperial units alongside metric, or on their own for draught beer and cider, bottled milk and road traffic signs.

“This is national legislation and there has been no change to the law since the referendum result.”

 

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