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Press Releases

March 1, 2021
VDACS’ Weights and Measures Inspectors Help Protect Consumers and Businesses
The Commonwealth Observes National Weights and Measures Week March 1-7
Contact: Michael Wallace

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) joins the National Conference on Weights and Measures to observe National Weights and Measures Week, March 1-7. Weights and measures laws ensure that consumers get what they pay for, whether it is a gallon of gas, a pound of lunchmeat or the same price at the checkout scanner as the one posted on the shelves.

The VDACS Office of Weights and Measures is responsible for the inspection of all commercially used weighing and measuring devices in the Commonwealth. The office administers the state’s laws and regulations designed to maintain the integrity of transactions between buyers and sellers and prevent unfair competition in the marketplace.

Inspectors in the Office of Weights and Measures use highly accurate field standards and equipment to test commercial scales, meters and scanning equipment, and check the weight of packaged products. Inspectors are also responsible for testing the accuracy of fuel pumps and sampling of motor fuels. The office licenses individuals who certify the accuracy of weight tickets, called public weighmasters. In addition to its main office in Richmond, the Office of Weights and Measures operates three field offices and a metrology laboratory.

During fiscal year 2020, the office performed the following testing and inspection activities:

  • Conducted more than 92,600 tests of weights and measures devices, rejecting more than 21,100 for inaccuracies.
  • Collected and tested nearly 4,500 samples of motor fuels to verify octane ratings, percentage of ethanol and checked for the presence of water in the fuel.
  • Conducted nearly 57,700 point-of-sale inspections to verify the accuracy of store checkout scanners.
  • Verified the accurate weighing of more than 20,600 store-wrapped packaged items.
  • Investigated 355 consumer complaints.
  • Conducted more than 10,300 calibrations of standards of mass and volume (VDACS is a local resource for governments and industries calibrating to national standards), and police radar tuning forks.

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