Establishing Processor Inventory Weight for Random Weight Commodities
Issue: USDA purchases a number of commodities such as cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, and turkeys in random weight units. These items can be identified in the Food Distribution Commodity file by the absence of numbers under the heading "average gross pack weight.” or with a “1.00” under the heading "net pack weight." Because the container weights for these commodities vary, truckload weights will also vary correspondingly based on the number and weight of the containers. Therefore, it is important that processors credit each recipient agency for the actual weight of commodity received rather than an estimated truckload or container weight.
For direct shipments from the USDA vendor, we have some concern that processors may be determining each recipient agency's inventory based on the Notice of Delivery. The Notice of Delivery and Forwarding Notice only give an estimated weight per truckload. Frequently, there are considerable differences between this weight and the actual weight for the truckload as shown on the Notice of Shipment or the bill of lading. Another problem arises when these commodities are released for processing in small quantities from State agency storage facilities and the quantities released cannot be tied to specific shipments. In many cases, processors have used the USDA purchasing notice " target" carton weight of the commodities rather than the actual weight of commodity received.