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Non-automatic weighing instruments

The Commission highlights the necessity for harmonised European standards in the field of metrology to protect the public against incorrect results of weighing operations. This Directive therefore defines the requirements for non-automatic weighing instruments.


Directive 2009/23/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on non-automatic weighing instruments (Codified version) (Text with EEA relevance).


This Directive aims at harmonising the rules which apply to non-automatic * weighing instruments * in order to ensure their free movement in the internal market and to protect the public against the consequences of incorrect weighing results.


This Directive covers weighing instruments used for:

  • commercial transactions;
  • the calculation of a toll, tariff, tax, bonus, penalty, remuneration, indemnity or similar type of payment;
  • the application of laws or regulations, or for an expert opinion given in court proceedings;
  • the practice of medicine, in particular for weighing patients for the purposes of monitoring, diagnosis and medical treatment;
  • making up medicines on prescription in a pharmacy and in analyses carried out in medical and pharmaceutical laboratories;
  • the determination of price on the basis of mass for the purposes of direct sales to the public and the making-up of pre-packages;
  • any other application.

Placing on the market

The Member States are to ensure that only instruments complying with the essential requirements set out in Annex I of the Directive and bearing the “CE” marking are placed on the market. They may only block their placing on the market if they consider that these instruments do not meet the requirements of the Directive. In this case, they may prohibit or restrict their being placed on the market. They must inform the Commission thereof and give the reasons justifying their decision.

Conformity assessment

Manufacturers may choose between two conformity assessment methods to obtain the certificate of conformity for their products:

  • EC type examination followed by either the EC declaration of type conformity or EC verification;
  • EC unit verification.

Member States shall notify the Commission, as well as other Member States, of the bodies which they have appointed to carry out conformity assessment procedures, the specific tasks assigned to these bodies, and their identification numbers.

“CE” conformity marking and inscriptions

“CE” conformity marking should be affixed in a visible and indelible form on instruments for which CE conformity has been established. Any other marking may be affixed provided that it does not hinder understanding by third parties of the signification of CE marking and that it does not reduce its visibility or legibility.

Directive 2009/23/EC repeals Directive 90/384/EEC.

Key terms of the Act
  • Weighing instrument: a measuring instrument serving to determine the mass of a body by using the action of gravity on that body. A weighing instrument may also serve to determine other mass-related magnitudes, quantities, parameters or characteristics;
  • Non-automatic weighing instrument: a weighing instrument requiring the intervention of an operator during weighing;
  • Harmonised standard: a technical specification (European standard or harmonised document) adopted by the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN), the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (Cenelec), or the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), or by two or three of those bodies, upon a remit from the Commission in accordance with Directive 98/34/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 June 1998 laying down a procedure for the provision of information in the field of technical standards and regulations and of rules on Information Society services and the general guidelines for cooperation between the Commission, the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and those three bodies, signed on 28 March 2003.


ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Directive 2009/23/EC



OJ L122 of 16.5.2009

Last updated: 25.08.2009

See also

  • The NANDO-IS database in which you will find the European or third country notified bodies responsible for conformity assessment procedures.
  • WELMEC - European Cooperation in Legal Metrology
  • The European Commission DG Enterprise and Industry website “Measuring instruments
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