BCGA warning on rogue traders threat to licensed industry

The British Compressed Gases Association (BCGA) is concerned that injuries may occur from the purchase of sub-standard gas, which is widely available from unscrupulous sellers.

According to the trade association, poor gas can jeopardise safety, hygiene and quality.  

Doug Thornton, Chief Executive of the BCGA, said: "We are aware that rogue traders are stealing cylinders and filling them with non-food grade gases.  

"For the sake of safety and reputation, drinks dispense gases should always be purchased from a reputable supplier."   "Good drinks dispense gas is supplied as food grade gas in a cylinder that is correctly labelled, tested and in good condition, and it is essential for serving the product in the way that the drinks supplier intended.

"However, outlets are being targeted by seemingly attractive offers from non-reputable suppliers.  

"These cylinders are cheaper than those supplied by reputable suppliers, but our advice is that they should be avoided at all costs.   "It's a false economy, which could prove fatal.   "The cylinders are not correctly checked and tested and could explode if they're corroded inside.   "Poor quality gas will also spoil the taste of beers, lagers and soft drinks, which will ultimately mean dissatisfied customers."  

A poster-style guide, which includes reference to the dangers of purchasing gas from non-reputable sources, has recently being produced by the BCGA, with support from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) and the Brewing, Food & Beverage Industry Suppliers Association (BFBi).  

The poster ‘Good Gas - Good Business' is available for free download and is designed to be put on the walls in licensed premises to make people aware of gas issues. It is part of a long-standing partnership between all three organisations to drive safety standards across the industry.  

As well as highlighting the problems associated with rogue traders, the poster also addresses the use of gas in confined spaces - and the importance of using correctly installed and maintained gas equipment.   ‘Good Gas - Good Business' can be found in the BCGA website's dedicated beverage gases area at

The BBPA also include details of gas safety at and the BFBi includes relevant information on its home page at  

Mr Thornton added: "Industrial gases are the UK's invisible industry, which perform a number of important tasks within the beverage dispense sector.   "Carbon dioxide is an inherent component of beer and an intrinsic part of carbonated beverages. "The gas is also relied upon to operate cellar equipment, including the pushing out of products from containers such as a keg.   "Our role as a trade association is to ensure ‘mission safety' in their transportation, storage and use and provide the licensed sector in their best use."  

Other guidance for licensees includes GN 30, ‘The Safe Use Of Gases In The Beverage Dispense Industry' and the recently updated leaflet L10, ‘Profit Through Quality - Good Gas, Good Business.'  

There's also a guidance note GN 9, ‘The Application Of The Confined Spaces Regulations To The Drinks Dispense Industry.'  



Note to Editors

The ‘invisible industry' underpinning a safe, successful and healthy nation - industrial and medical gases are essential to the existence and wellbeing of thousands of people in the UK every day. Industrial gases perform a wide-ranging role supporting the manufacture of information technology, as well as key UK industrial sectors including steelmaking, refining, welding, chemical processing and electronics. They also help keep homes warm, water clean and food nutritious, appealing and affordable - while medical gases play a critical role in applications including respiratory care, pain therapies and anaesthesia.

The British Compressed Gases Association (BCGA) is the UK membership body for this critical industry. With a commitment to stringent quality, safety and environmental measures, BCGA members employ 19,000 people directly and account for an annual turnover of £2.7 billion.

Members of BCGA operate in a highly-regulated industry and work together on technical, safety, health and environmental issues to achieve high standards of integrity and environmental care, both within their own and customers' working environments.

BCGA promotes safety practice through its publications and also participates in the preparation and revision of National, European and International Standards.

Press release issued by Jane Shepherd, Shepherd PR - 01335 368020

07/2016                    26 September 2016        

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