Camelot’s plans for online lottery sales are a big threat to retailers, according to convenience retail groups.

Camelot is already selling scratchcards online and plans to launch the main draw on the internet by the end of 2003.

Eddie Thompson, chairman of the Scottish Retail Consortium and representative on the Neighbourhood Lottery Alliance, said: “Many people who use independents will go online.”

He said the Scottish Grocers’ Federation and the ACS would want to meet Camelot chiefs to find out their plans.

Association of Convenience Stores public affairs and commercial manager James Lowman said: “Retailers are going all out to meet sales targets in the face of declining sales. It will be even harder for them if online sales cannibalise existing sales.”