Measuring instruments

Measuring instruments in this context refer to, for example, scales in food shops and fuel pumps at service stations. Buyers must be able to rely on measuring instruments to get the right amount of goods and merchants to get the correct amount of money in return.

It is our job to ensure that measuring instruments are fit for purpose and work as required by law.

Advice and guidance

Measuring instruments must be fit for purpose and free of technical faults. They must also be properly calibrated and tared. 

Calibration refers to regular checks to ensure the accuracy of measurements. Scales in food shops are calibrated at three-year intervals and fuel pumps at two-year intervals. Only accredited inspection bodies can calibrate measuring instruments. Regular calibration ensures that buyers get the right amount of goods and merchants get the correct amount of money in return.

Taring refers to deducting the weight of the container from the gross measurement. Taring also helps to ensure that the right amount of goods is sold to buyers. 

If you suspect that a measuring instrument is not accurate, report the fault to the merchant or business owner. If you notice that a measuring instrument has not been calibrated or is otherwise faulty, you can email your nearest Regional State Administrative Agency or the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency. A link to the contact information of Regional State Administrative Agencies’ registries is provided at the bottom of this page.

If you disagree with a merchant about, for example, the price of a product sold by weight, you can lodge a written complaint with the merchant in question. Help and advice on individual cases are available from the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority’s consumer advisors.

Regional State Administrative Agencies can send an inspector to visit a store or a marketplace in person. We report all faulty measuring instruments to the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency, which decides on any further action. Using an unlawful measuring instrument can lead to a fine or even a police investigation. Minor violations are punishable by a fine.

Both Regional State Administrative Agencies and the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency perform checks on the accuracy of instruments used to measure servings of alcohol.

Links to legal texts