A report by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has found that some ?off-grid? fuel suppliers may not be treating their rural customers fairly and has recommended a wider examination of their pricing practices.

Thousands of rural businesses, including shoots and game farms, rely on ?off-grid? energy, such as heating oil and bottled gas for rearing sheds. Among a number of concerns reported by the OFT was that some suppliers were charging a different price on delivery from that quoted when the order was taken.

The OFT also received complaints from people locked into expensive liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) contracts following an initial introductory rate, and said that it would work with the industry to resolve this matter.

Executive director Clive Maxwell said: ?While there seems to be a good choice of suppliers across most of the country, we have real concerns about whether consumer protection law is being complied with in all cases. It is important that the ?off-grid? energy sector works well and that people who rely on it are protected.?

The rest of this article appears in the 26th October issue of Shooting Times.

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