National Weights and Measures Week

National Weights and Measures Week 

News Release 

Contact: Mahesh Albuquerque

National Weights and Measures Week celebrates 224 years of consumer protection

When states around the nation celebrate national Weights and Measures Week March 1-7, many do not realize there once was a time in the U.S. where each state had its own system for weighing and measuring consumer products.

The unification of how everything from produce to lumber to electric vehicle chargers is weighed and measured started with the nation’s second president, John Adams, signing the federal Weights and Measures law on March 2, 1799.

The National Conference on Weights and Measures, a professional nonprofit association of state and local officials, federal agencies, manufacturers, retailers, and consumers, began developing the weights and measure standards for commerce in 1905.

The organization brings the right interests together to keep pace with innovative advancements in the marketplace.

“America is the world’s top consumer society, and everything we buy is sold by weight and measure,” said NCWM Chairman Mahesh Albuquerque. “People often don’t think about who makes sure the grocery store scale is calibrated correctly, or whether the fuel pump is dispensing accurately. That level of consumer confidence is our job, and we do it with pride.

“National Weights and Measures Week is an opportunity to recognize the importance of the very foundation of our economy and our American measurement system.”

Albuquerque said this year’s theme, “Collaborating With Partners and Stakeholders for a Greater Measure of Equity,” is timely as inflation has households everywhere paying close attention to budgets, and households in underserved communities particularly hard-pressed and relying on market fairness.

“We want consumers everywhere to take a moment this week and notice all the things in their lives bought and sold by measure,” Albuquerque said. “No matter where you live or what you purchase, there is an inspector who works tirelessly to make sure you get what you pay for. Inspectors favor neither the buyers or sellers – they work to ensure fairness and accuracy in the marketplace.”

Weights and measures inspectors operate according to state and local rules and regulations and the model standards as adopted by NCWM, published by U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology. Those model standards used by inspectors are called Handbooks 44, 130, and 133. They encompass and guide state and local laws as well as the highly sophisticated tools that aid inspectors in their work.

The mission of the National Conference on Weights and Measures is to ensure equity through uniform standards in a changing marketplace. The organization brings the right interests together to keep pace with innovative advancements in the marketplace.

The NCWM promotes consistency in the laws and standards for U.S. Weights and Measures to ensure goods are weighed and measured correctly. By promoting standardized business practices, transparency is achieved between buyers and sellers in the marketplace. This in turn achieves consumer confidence and allows U.S. businesses to compete at home and abroad, ultimately strengthening our economy.

Learn more about Weights and Measures Week Here