Measurements at open-air marketplaces and in the sale of seasonal products
In sales at open-air marketplaces and in the sale of comparable seasonal products in Finland, the seller may only use scales, traditional cylinder (mug-shaped) vegetable measures or the wooden cube-shaped potato measures called “kappa” in Finnish that comply with the requirements of the Finnish Measuring Instruments Act to measure the quantity of products to determine the price. An inspection body approves the manufacture of the cylinder measures and wooden potato measures.
Measures used at open-air marketplaces cannot be used for ordinary retail within the cashier lines.
The sale of solid products by volume is only permitted at open-air marketplaces and in comparable sales of seasonal products. Solid products at the lower end of the production chain, such as berries or root vegetables. can be sold at open-air marketplaces using cylinder measures and wooden potato measures compliant with the requirements. Sales by volume have a long tradition in market vending, even if the associated measurement method is much more unreliable than weighing the product on scales.
However, this exception does not apply to industrially-made products, such as sweets, which cannot be sold by volume at open-air marketplaces, either.
A plastic box is not a measure
Disposable plastic boxes commonly used in the sale of berries are not measures compliant with the Finnish Measuring Instruments Act, unless they bear the appropriate conformity marking. If berries are packed into such boxes prior to sale, their quantity must be measured with a legal measuring instrument, such as a cylinder measure or a scale.
Scales used at open-air marketplaces and the in sale of seasonal products must comply with the requirements of the Measuring Instruments Act.
Scales used at open-air marketplaces must be verified every 3 years.
Cylinder measures and wooden potato measures
In addition to the volume mark, a cylinder measure or a traditional wooden potato measure (“kappa”) approved by an inspection body must have the verification mark shown in Figure 1.
In-service verification is not required for cylinder measures or wooden potato measures, if the measure and its markings remain in good working order.
Figure 1. Material measure verification mark.
Elsewhere on the Net
Website of the European Commission on legal metrology and pre-packaged products
The European Commission’s list on the harmonised standards of the MID
NANDO database Database of the European Commission on notified bodies
OIML International Organization of Legal Metrology
WELMEC (The body for the promotion of European cooperation in legal metrology)