To sell goods by weight or measure in Australia, it is required by law to use a verified trade approved weighing scale. Some scales come with a trade certificate when purchased but it is important to note not all scales can be issued a trade certificate.
The National Measurement Institute (NMI) approves a particular scale as a trade verified scale if it is in accordance with their regulations. Once a scale or weighing instrument has been issued a ‘pattern approval’, it is then issued with an NMI Approval number. Scales or weighing equipment with NMI approval numbers are therefore able to be tested and verified by accredited personnel, allowing the equipment to be used for legal trade use.
Why should you take it seriously?
Businesses that sell goods by measurement, or that manufacture, pack, import or sell pre-packaged goods, are required to comply with the Australian trade measurement laws. This also applies to companies who supply or maintain measuring instruments.
The laws apply to both wholescale and retail businesses. If a business is caught short measuring its customers, it can be fined up to $170,000 per offence for a company. And for an individual, the fine is up to $34,000.
Hence, if you use a measuring instrument such as a scale to sell goods, you must make sure it is:
- An approved type, that is suitable for its intended purpose
- Verified before use by a licensed technician and company
- Used in the correct manner
- Kept clean and in good working order
- Verified after each repair or adjustment.
National Weighing & Instruments can provide trade verification for certain products. Please contact us to discuss your application in further detail.