Class III Certified Scales At The Farmers Market Are Recommended

At most farmers markets around the United States, state inspectors use calibrated weight kits to validate and certify digital scales for commercial transactions. Laws and regulations can vary from state to state but generally it is a good idea to purchase a scale that is Class III NTEP approved, legal for trade. The scale will have a Certificate of Conformance (CoC#) that should be posted somewhere on the enclosure. Of course, this is something we’ve been saying for years and years but we still see sellers every now and then trying to use some cheap scale they bought on ebay for $35.  In fact, next time you’re buying something over a digital scale like chocolate, candy, or frozen yogurt, take a look at the scale and see if you can find the CoC #.  Take a look at the article below for additional info.

At farmers markets, growers have the option to sell produce by weight. If they choose to do so, they will need to meet the South Dakota laws regarding certified scales. South Dakota Codified Law requires any device used in a commercial transaction to be an approved NTEP (National Type Evaluation Program) device, meet the requirements of the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) Handbook 44, and to be certified and sealed (inspected) by the State of South Dakota Department of Weights and Measures. This includes countertop scales, typically found at farmers markets. Inspecting a scale is beneficial to both the vendor and consumer, as it ensures both parties are receiving fair and equitable treatment. For example, consumers want to feel confident they are “getting what they pay for,” while vendors need to know they are not giving away their hard earned product.

Vendors should purchase a scale with a NTEP certification. This certificate indicates that the scale demonstrated the ability to be properly calibrated and can hold calibration over time. Keep in mind that no device is perfect and must be adjusted periodically. Scales can be purchased off the Internet, from scale companies in South Dakota, or additional locations you may select. – See more at: http://igrow.org/community-development/local-foods/farmers-market-operation-certified-scales/

We should also mention that you should get your scale checked and calibrated each year. We suggest doing this in February (or whenever your “slow” time of the year is) when your weighing needs aren’t quite as intense as they are in spring and summer. At this time you should make sure your scale is accurate and purchase any accessories like spare rechargeable batteries or keypads so there are no surprises during your busy time of the season.

Ohaus Aviator 7000 Scale Overview & Review

As we often do on this site, we like to take a look at a scale and let you know what we like and what we don’t like. The video linked below basically sums up our feelings regarding the Ohaus Aviator 7000 price computing scale. This scale is actually the latest in a long line of successful retail scales from Ohaus.  This scale is very impressive and has just about all the high quality features that you could ask for in an affordable package. The dual range capacity is a great feature. The battery choices that are available make the scale quite versatile. How many of you out there have either misplaced or temporarily misplaced an AC adapter? Well, with the Aviator 7000 there is actually a compartment in the bottom of the scale to store your AC adapter when not in use. The scale also has built in cavities on each side which makes carrying the scale much easier. If you need to connect to a point of sale, this unit actually has that capability. We were also impressed with the accumulation function and the customer change function which were easy to use and could save you from calculating your customer’s change using a calculator.

To be fair, we did have a couple of areas we felt were lacking. First, as we mentioned the scale connects to POS systems but yet the scale doesn’t display weight in ounces.  And, the factory added a fourth line of information to the weight display. This fourth line is to display tare weights. This is nice to see, especially on the operator side of the unit, but on the customer’s side of the display, the information can start to clump together and be somewhat overwhelming. Overall we were very impressed with the Ohaus Aviator 7000 retail scale and feel it would be a great choice for almost anyone out there looking for a high quality digital scale for the markets.

NEW PRODUCT!! Detecto DM15 Scale With 240 Ounce Capacity

This is no joke! The Detecto DM15 is the ideal choice for retail frozen yogurt, ice cream, coffee beans, nuts, and candy stores. The Detecto DM15 price computing scale features a unique 240 ounce capacity by 0.1 ounce accuracy (15 lb x 0.005 lb). The DM15 scale offers up to 99 easy-to-add PLUs for fast reference (14 direct quick keys and 85 indirect PLUs) and displays Weight, Unit Price, and Total Price on the front and rear backlit LCDs (up to six 0.5-in/13-mm high digits) for both the operator and customer to view simultaneously. The retail price computing scale offers a dual power source of rechargeable battery pack and 110/120VAC 50/60 Hz adapter (included). Auto Shut-off, Sleep, and Backlight Off modes extend the retail scale’s battery life. The NTEP legal-for-trade scale’s Pre-Pack key saves time by retaining the Unit Price and Tare for repetitive price computing, making the operator’s job even faster. Features adjustable feet and bubble level.

The particulars you may be interested in are as follows. The scale model number is DM15. The capacity is 240 oz or 15 lb. Readability is 0.1 oz or 0.005 lbs. The display is 0.5-in/13-mm high, 7-segment LCD digits with backlight. The digits are listed as 6 digits each for Weight, Unit Price, and Total Price. Of course everyone wants to know the power options which are 12 VDC 1.0A rechargeable battery pack (included) or AC adapter 110/120 VAC 50/60 Hz (included). The battery operation is listed as 120 working hours of continuous use without backlight turned on / 60 hours with backlight turned on. If you utilize the memory functions they are PLU: Up to 99 Price Look Ups (14 direct quick keys and 85 indirect). The tare capability is 100% of full scale capacity. You will want to use the scale in an environment with an operating temperature of 14 to 104 degrees F. The weighing platform is stainless steel. Finally, the scale is NTEP approved Class III with certificate of conformance number 13-058. Continue reading

NEW PRODUCT! Ohaus Aviator 7000 Retail Scale

Over the years the Ohaus line of retail price computing scales has been a pretty solid choice for customers looking for a reliable, high quality scale. Of course the predecessor of the Ohaus RE15US and RE30US was the old XRT series scales. And of course before that we had the Tiger II scale. And finally before that it was the 8433 scale. All of those were nice scales that were fairly simple to use and they just worked. In fact, if you look closely, you’ll still see an old 8433 still in action at some small farmers market. Recently, we received word that Ohaus was going to be upgrading their retail scale lineup and replacing the RE and RA series.  Below is a summary of the new scale and a link on where to purchase the new scale.

The Ohaus Aviator 7000 retail scale has been conceived to offer optimum quality versus price in order to guarantee the robustness, operating speed and accuracy you need, whatever your retail environment. The Light-Touch layer keyboard is setting standards thanks to its fast operation, easy cleaning and cost efficiency, while the large 4-line LCD including separate tare line makes daily tasks simple. For secure and easy transportation the Aviator 7000 includes practical design features such as Ergo grips and integrated cable storage. In addition it offers POS protocol support. Overall the Aviator 7000 offers you a complete package of features rarely seen on an entry level price-computing scale – ensuring that it stands out from the crowd.

Key Features and Benefits of the Aviator 7000
Two Model Options and Several Weighing Ranges
Aviator® 7000 is available as a compact or tower model. Both models are available in the following dual weighing ranges: 15 x 0.005 lb / 30 x 0.01 lb and 30 x 0.01 lb / 60 x 0.02 lb. Continue reading

Product Spotlight: CAS ER Junior Retail Scale

Digital price computing scales like the CAS ER JR are designed to take all the guess work out of pricing. These general purpose computing scales for direct sale of commodities in stores such as supermarkets, delicatessens and groceries are designed for portable use with AC power and built in rechargeable battery. The ER Jr certified scale is ideal for farmers markets, sandwich shops, bakeries, candy and coffee shops, convenience stores, produce markets, hardware stores and more. The scale features a 30 pound weighing capacity.

The ER Jr legal for trade certified price computing scale exemplifies CAS Quality and will give you years of dependable service at an affordable price. The ER Junior features a 30 pound dual range NTEP approved capacity. The scale has (3) direct price look ups (PLU’s) and includes a bright liquid crystal display on the operator side for the scale operator and on the customer side for the customer to see. The display includes a vibrant blue backlight.

The ER Jr from CAS Corporation is completely portable with the built in rechargeable battery which lasts up to 200 hours (without backlight) on a single charge. A low battery indicator lets you know when it is time for a charge. The ER Jr legal for trade produce scale has a small footprint at 11.75 inches x 12.75 inches and will fit easily on counter tops, tables or any tight workspace. With best in class features and an affordable price, you can place multiple ER Jr price computing scales throughout your business to ensure customer satisfaction and maximum profitability. Additional standard features include lb/kg unit switching and three different methods to enter a tare weight: platter tare, keyboard tare, and programmable tare for a PLU. If you’re in the market for a basic retail scale that can calculate price per pound, then you may have found the perfect item for your needs. If you need a price quote or additional information please call the sales department at Central Carolina Scale at (919) 776-7737 today.

Is There Still A Hanging Produce Scale For Sale That’s Certified Legal For Trade?

We usually focus on the digital retail scales that you see at the market each week but today we wanted to look at a classic scale you’ve probably seen at a produce market. You would be surprised at how often customers ask if they can still purchase a hanging scale for weighing their produce at the farmers market. Even though we now have the super fast and relatively reliable digital scales available, many customers actually ask for the proven performer with the dial that spins around to display the weight. Sometimes it actually does make a lot of sense to choose one of these classics. If you don’t want to fool around with batteries every few weeks, then a hanging dial scale might be a good choice. If your location has an overhang or tent that is easy to attach a scale to, then this might be a good idea for you.

NTEP certified hanging produce scales

Of course, if you choose to go this route, you will want to choose a NTEP certified legal for trade hanging scale like the Chatillon series. It’s also a good idea to get a scale that has the double dial so both sides can see the dial and completely agree on the weight that is listed on the scale dial. Unfortunately, if you do choose one of these scales, you will need to bring your calculator with you to calculate the price per pound.

The Chatillon Century Series hanging scale is well known for  accuracy, dependability and reliability. The Century Series feature a glass-covered 7-inch dial that reads clockwise. A double dial option is available (one dial reads clockwise, the other counter clockwise). These scales feature a corrosion-resistant band, bezel and housing and have a rugged, steel inner frame. Scale capacities are reached in two pointer revolutions.

The Centry Series are Class lll “Legal for Trade” scales. Century Series can be supplied with a CG Series scoop or the popular CAS circular pan. The CAS Pan is constructed of stainless steel. 3-inch deep round pan has drain holes. The CG Scoop is ideal for weighing loose materials. Scoop and suspension chain of galvanized construction.

Legal for Trade Scale Requirements

Quite often many customers purchase new digital scales or they have their current scale calibrated or certified. These are typically scales they can use at places like the farmer’s market to sell their produce by the pound. Basically any device used where items are bought or sold by weight is normally required by most state’s laws to be inspected and certified each year. This would include a counter top digital scale at a farmer’s market (or mechanical hanging scale) that is used to weigh produce that customers want to buy. Of course, inspecting a retail scale is an advantage to both the farmer and the customer. As you can see below it’s important to have accurate and legal weighing equipment.

 Keep in mind the article was for South Dakota, so be sure to check with your state department of agriculture or weights and measures to see what your state’s rules are. The author of the article also said if you do not want to purchase a certified scale then you must sell your items by the bag, piece, or bunch — or in pint or quart containers. This is not the selling method I would recommend. These days customers are counting every penny and want to know exactly what they’re paying for. Your customers want to know exactly how much they’re buying and likewise how much it costs. Even if you chose to not use a certified scale at the market, you still might want to check weigh some of the bags or buckets to make sure that you and the customer are getting the correct portions versus profits.

Of course we’ve discussed this topic before on this site but if you are buying or selling your items based on weight, you want to make sure that you purchase a scale that has NTEP approval with a certificate of conformance number.  The CoC# should be on the side of the scale in most cases.

Product Spotlight: CAS s2000jr

The CAS S-2000JR is a NTEP legal for trade price computing scale for direct sale of commodities in stores such as supermarkets, delicatessens and groceries. The S2000JR has proven to be a top of the line fully featured retail price computing scale. The Model S2000 Jr. is available in several different configurations, they include dual range capacities for better accuracy and two display configurations, LCD or VFD. The scale is also one of the very few computing scales that has the ounces unit. With the built in rechargeable battery, you can easily use the scale indoors or take it to the farmers market or produce stand. S2000JR features display on both operator and customer side and is NTEP approved legal for trade. Connect with the optional label printer for a complete weighing system. This scale has quietly become an industry benchmark for basic retail computing scales in the United States market place. When choosing the proper scale for your needs, you will need to answer three simple questions.

#1   What display do I want? VFD or LCD
VFD is green digits with black background. LCD is black digits with gray background. Battery power comes standard on both, but battery lasts much longer on LCD models.

#2   Do I want a Pole Display?
Pole display which faces both operator & consumer is available for either VFD or LCD models. (You can not add a pole later)

#3   What maximum weight am I going to be weighing?
Max capacities include 15 lb, 30 lb or 60 lb.

And once you answer those questions you are ready to order your scale.  Of course you can also choose to add a label printer or receipt printer if you wish. The S2000jr really is a nice value for the average consumer in the marketplace looking for an affordable and reliable commercial scale.

Can I Buy An American Made Digital Price Computing Scale?

Just about every year we get asked by a potential customer, “where can I buy a digital price computing scale that is made in the USA?” There really aren’t many choices anymore. With the low cost products from China it is simply more efficient for U.S. scale manufacturers to contract out with a chinese company to build several hundred retail scales and then ship them over in a container on a boat. Almost every major scale company in the country does this. Generally, the scales are built pretty well and they weigh well enough to earn a CoC number and be deemed “legal for trade”.

If you are looking to buy an American Made retail scale for your farmers market or candy shoppe then please take a look at the Detecto PC-30 retail scales. Detecto’s PC series feature a 0.56 inch bright red LED display on the front and back of the scale for weight, unit and total price as well as 99 programmable preset prices, and RS232 serial port for printer connection. Customized print options include “Packed on” and “Sell by” dates with removable PLU key label chart for identifying your specific products on the keyboard. A low profile, compact design, perfect for limited counter space in businesses such as delis, meat shops, candy counters, cheese shops or anywhere anything is sold by weight. The scale features an alpha keypad to name each product for printing on the labels. 6, 15 and 30 lb capacities available. The scale is NTEP legal-for-trade and is built to be a heavy duty scale to give you many years of service.

To be honest in our opinion this is a scale that works best in a permanent solution. In other words we wouldn’t recommend buying this to carry to the market every week because it is heavier than a traditional low cost import computing scale. But if you have a retail shop or buffet that you’re looking to sell food by the pound, then this PC scale from Detecto might be a good choice for that application.

Detecto Scale, an ISO-9001 certified scale manufacturer, markets a complete line of quality weighing products for the healthcare, food service and shipping and logistics industries. Detecto headquarters and factory are in Webb City, Missouri, USA with warehouses in Canada and England. Founded in 1900, Detecto Scale is the largest medical scale manufacturer in the United States. The family-owned and privately-held company employs a staff of 350 associates trained in manufacturing USA-made, high-quality weighing products. Detecto has been featured on the TV shows “How It’s Made” and “World’s Greatest!…”  Detecto Scale provides a one-stop shop for all of your weighing needs with an extensive product line of scales and weighing systems for a multitude of different industries. Located in the heartland of America, Detecto brings you more than high-quality USA-made weighing products, the company also offers knowledgeable, courteous, and efficient phone and electronic media support staff who are ready to answer your questions and take your orders. Detecto’s customer service, technical support, and aftermarket parts departments are all located at the factory headquarters in Webb City, MO. The company offers software, hardware, and connectivity support directly from the factory. Your risk is eliminated when you own a Detecto scale, since you only have one call to make for new products and service support. When you buy from Detecto, you’re not just buying a high-quality USA-made product… you’re putting Americans to work.

Low Cost Retail Scales

The title of this post says it all doesn’t it? Aren’t we all looking for low cost products?  It doesn’t have to be scales it can be anything from computers to software to sports equipment or watches. We all want to find great products at the lowest price possible.

There is nothing wrong with this idea. I do this all the time and in fact many times I will buy a product simply because it got good reviews and it is a few bucks cheaper than a similar product. But I was reminded this week that you have to be careful when you are dealing with cheap items (mostly from China).  Many times there is a reason why an item is cheaper.

In our business we deal with trade approved digital scales every day. Quite often we are asked for used retail scales. Of course they can be called other things like second hand or refurbished but basically this is code for hey, I’m looking for a super low cost set of digital scales, whatcha got?  Continue reading