Since 1 July 2016, suppliers around the world are obliged to submit the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) to the carrier before loading a full container on the vessel. The aim of this SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) agreement is to increase and guarantee safety during sea transport. To determine the verified gross weight, two methods are specified by the IMO (International Maritime Organization):

Method 1:
Weighing the packed and sealed container on a calibrated and certified weighbridge. This method is useful if you have your own weighbridge. If not, multi-stops must  be done, which result in extra charges and which can influence the optimal transport route and transport time.

Method 2:
Weighing all individual packages, the stuffing and securing items, plus adding the container tara weight.

An example:
Single box weighed by calibrated scale: 10 KG
1. Loading 1500 boxes (1500 x 10 KG): 15,000 KG
2. 1500 boxes loaded on 20 pallets, 35 KG each: 700 KG
3. 10 square timbers for the purpose of securing, 5 KG each: 50 KG
4. 40' container tara weight (noted on container): 4.300 KG
Total gross mass of the container: 20.050 KG

This method is useful if you know your goods and wrapping material well. Additional costs will only occur, if the transmitted weight differs from the real weight. Furthermore, no additional time must be scheduled, as multi-stops can be avoided. Initially, we found a strong tendency towards Method 1, especially because many people have been afraid of the risk of a weight difference with Method 2. But so far, these concerns have not become true, so that many of our customers have already switched to Method 2 and can thus take advantage of cost and time savings.

Don´t hesitate to contact us, if you have any questions.

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