The RMS Guide to Becoming A Retailer, Part 5: Laws you must be aware of

laws you must be aware of

If you’re interested in opening a new shop, cafe or restaurant in the UK you need to be aware of your legal obligations and the regulations that govern your industry. Getting a grasp on these laws, and getting sound legal advice, will help prevent you from making costly mistakes that could ruin your livelihood.

In this article, we’ll cover some of the major pieces of regulation that new companies will need to comply with and what they mean for your business. It is by no means comprehensive and is intended purely to provide an overview.

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The Steps Your Pharmacy Business Needs To Take To Become FMD Complaint

FMD compliant

The Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD), which requires all EU pharmacies to be able to scan 2D data matrix barcodes, use integrated software to verify and decommission medicines from those barcodes and check medicine packaging for tampering is in effect from the 9th of February 2019.

The new standard of packaging, alongside the new audit trail, has been created by the EU with the intention of reducing the number of counterfeit medicines on the market and decreasing the associated health risks.

The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) confirmed last month that checking pharmacies for FMD compliance will be part of its pharmacy inspections and it will “use its regulatory powers, including improvement action plans, to ensure pharmacies take action” if they are not FMD compliant.

There is some reprieve for pharmacies rushing to become compliant as the GPhC has stated that it “does not see the implementation date of February 9 as being a ‘cliff edge’”.

However, legal compliance is compulsory for all pharmacy owners.

Here are our tips to becoming FMD compliant:

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FMD 2019: How your pharmacy business can prepare for the change in law


The Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD for short) is a regulation passed by the EU Parliament in 2016 which is in force from the 9th of February 2019. The new regulation requires the addition of safety features on the packaging of all medicines to verify the authenticity of the medicine from the point of manufacturing until at the endpoint with the patient.

This regulation enforces two fundamental changes in how medicine is packaged: the addition of an anti-tampering device and the addition of a unique identifier for each medicine package. The unique identifier comes in the form of a 2D data matrix barcode.

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The RMS Guide to Becoming A Retailer, Part 4: Marketing your new retail business

part 4

In the fourth part of our how to be a retailer guide, we’re discussing the big M – Marketing. Marketing allows retailers to develop relationships with their customers and target demographics beyond the shop and beyond the sale. As the Harvard Business Review famously concluded: “Marketing is Everything”.

Marketing your new retail business can be a daunting task. How do you begin? Which channels are cost-effective? How do you drive the right people through the door?

Let’s begin by breaking it down.

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The RMS Guide to Becoming A Retailer, Part 3: Location, Location, Location


Location, Location, Location

Location can mean everything to a business. Businesses with inferior products or customer service can thrive purely based on having a great location. Stunning shops with brilliant products can fail horribly, again, purely based on location. Picking a location for your shop or restaurant is probably one of the first decisions you’ll make in retail but it might just be the most important one. Here are some of the factors you should account for:

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The RMS Guide to Becoming A Retailer, Part 2: Margins + Competitors


In Part 1 of our guide on how to be a retailer, we focused on how to pick a product area and perform research in that market area. For Part 2, we’ll be covering two core aspects of running any business – retail or otherwise – margins and competition.

There are some sobering statistics about startup failures and retail closures so it is doubly important to enter a market knowing a) that there is potential for profitability at some point and b) that you can compete against your established competitors.

Margins make or break businesses. Businesses who enter markets with low gross margins will have to achieve larger sales figures to cover other business costs. Having good gross margins will give you greater flexibility and allow for additional sales and marketing tactics such as half price sales or bulk discounts.

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The RMS Guide to Becoming A Retailer, Part 1: Do you know what to sell?

picking a product

At RMS, we talk to many people looking to start retail businesses asking for advice. Becoming a retailer is a long journey with many factors so we thought it would be best to start a series covering each of the core aspects of becoming a retailer from product, location and marketing to hiring, legal and stock control.

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