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Weights and Measures

The following legal measures are specified in the Weights and Measures Act:

Draught Beer and Cider
May only be sold in a third of a pint, two-thirds of a pint or multiples of half a pint. These must be served in stamped brim measure or line measured glasses, or from Government-stamped meters.

Gin, rum, whisky and vodka are required to be sold in metric measures of 25ml or 35ml. Only one selected measure can be used throughout any establishment - a notice must be displayed stating which measure is served. These measures do not apply to a mixture of three or more liquids (i.e. a cocktail).

Metric measures of either 125ml or 175ml (or multiples of these) must be used. Both measures can be used in the same establishment but stamped-glasses or a Government stamped-measure must be used. Wine in carafes may be sold in 250ml, 500ml or 750ml, or one litre. Carafes must be stamped with the relevant quantity.

BIS advice is as follows:
'Shandy may be sold in any quantity although it is traditionally sold in pints and half-pints. However, since the derogation in the 1989 Units of Measurement Directive allows draught beer and cider to be sold by the pint in perpetuity (but does not extend to either perry or shandy), it will not be possible for legislation to allow either of these drinks to be sold in imperial measures. As a result, from 1 January 1995 perry and shandy will be permitted to be sold in any quantity as long as the quantity is a metric one. Using pint glasses does not of itself constitute selling by the pint. Accordingly, from 1995 licensees could continue to use pint and half-pint glasses for sales of perry and shandy as long as the price of the equivalent quantity in metric terms (568 ml in the case of the pint and 284 ml in the case of the half-pint) was clearly displayed.'