Tennessee celebrates weights and measures

NASHVILLE — The Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA) will celebrate Weights and Measures week March 1-7, 2021. The week focuses on the importance of accurate weights and measures in commerce for consumers and for businesses. 

“Our inspectors work to protect consumers at the fuel pump, at the grocery store and at other locations such as the airport where scales are used to determine luggage weight,” Commissioner Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. said. “Inspectors follow nationally adopted best practices and adhere to the highest standards. TDA certifies any scales that are used for commercial businesses to keep the marketplace fair and honest.”

In addition to testing gas pumps and grocery store scales, weights and measures officials are responsible for UPC price verification scanner inspections, and checking signage, advertisements and price calculations at retailers.

As part of the Consumer and Industry Services Division, the Weights and Measures Section includes the Johnson Metrology Laboratory that maintains and houses the primary standards of mass, volume and length for the State of Tennessee. The lab offers calibration services using the most current equipment and testing capabilities.

Each fiscal year, Weights and Measures inspectors verify that the fuel being sold to drivers meets quality standards. From July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, Tennessee conducted 6,034 pump inspections on approximately 94,000 fuel pumps; 4,869 scale inspections on approximately 18,695 small to large capacity scales; 4,299 fuel tank inspections against contamination; and collected 7,460 fuel samples from 205,668,497 gallons of fuel being offered for sale.

Weights and Measures Week is celebrated each year to commemorate John Adams signing the first U.S. weights and measures law on March 2, 1799. Tennessee is a member of the National Conference on Weights and Measures. NCWM has developed national weights and measures standards since 1905.

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