he importance of scales in a foodservice operation cannot be stressed enough. Facilities that serve the retail foodservice market can ensure their products meet consistency standards by measuring every ingredient that goes into every product they provide. High-quality, accurate scales prevent waste on the production end and secure solid figures for accounting purposes.
On the other end of production, receiving scales carry just as much importance to the foodservice supplier. Large shipments of raw materials and ingredients can be deceptive. Over time, a pound or two here and there when receiving 100 plus pound shipments weekly or monthly can add up to major losses over the years. It’s important for suppliers to know if the weights they are being charged for match the weights they receive.
Designed for accuracy, speed, immediate response and easily read digital displays electronic portion scales provide consistent usage in high-volume environments. Features to consider when shopping for electronic portion control scales tower display, rechargeable battery packs, whether or not the unit is waterproof and whether or not an oversized platform is available.
For a lower initial cost, mechanical portion scales provide some advantages to the more popular electronic scales. Aside from price, versatility and portability provide important features for the facility that changes set-ups often or uses the same scale at two or more locations throughout processes. In addition, mechanical scales eliminate the need for electricity or battery power, adding to ease of use and portability.
Receiving scales give facilities the ability to check inbound inventory quickly and accurately without disrupting workflow. Weighing platforms stand low, close to the ground and require a minimum amount of lifting. Both durable and accurate, certain models have the ability to transfer inventory information straight to the computer, thus saving time and labor. There are models available with casters that provide mobility, as well.
Facilities should consider remote and tower display options, as well as rechargeable battery options. Mechanical options can be purchased to eliminate the need for electricity and batteries.
When using a scale for production or receiving to accurately measure product, calibration of the scale must be done periodically to ensure accuracy. This not only ensures that a facility’s incoming inventory is correct, but also maintains consistency for customers. Sending scales out to a third party, having a service technician come in or calibrating in-house all depend on the state’s and industry’s requirements.
Scales can also be repaired. When contemplating repair, producers need to take into consideration cost. Sometimes the cost of a new scale is worth the price for newer technology, parts and guaranteed service rather than repair. However, if the problem is minimal, repair might offer advantages over complete replacement.
In general, any person or business that buys, sells, or charges based upon weight within the United States must use a Legal-for-Trade scale. Manufacturers such as EasyWeigh, TorRey, CAS, AND, Ohaus, Adam Equipment, Citizen Scales, and Mettler Toledo offer a wide variety of legal for trade scales for any application.
NTEP stands for National Type Evaluation Program, which is a non-profit corporation. Scales and other weighing equipment that are NTEP approved have been tested and evaluated to ensure they meet all government standards and requirements.