Beer flow monitoring company Brulines believes a report from the National Measurement Office (NMO) draws a line in the sand over the accuracy debate writes Ewan Turney. Tests by the NMO showed that standard Brulines Dispense Monitoring Service (DMS) kit has an accuracy variance of between -0.71% to +1.71% for keg beer and cider and +2.08% for keg stout. For cask ales the error range was from -5.23% to +3.66% — Brulines said that 1% of a pint of beer is slightly less than one teaspoon. As an average of all tests, the DMS equipment showed a variance of 0.14% and the I-draught 0.3%. However, one test was excluded from the results because of a “calibration error”, which would have seen the accuracy variance increase on standard DMS to 0.65%. The NMO said that as Brulines is “not prescribed by regulation” and is “not covered by Weights and Measures legislation” there is “no pass or fail” in the tests. “We believe the results from the comprehensive testing regime completed by the NMO confirm that the accuracy of DMS and i-draught flow metering, in conjunction with our processes and safeguards, and are absolutely fit for the purpose of beer dispense analysis,” said Brulines. It said its new I-draught system successfully identified whether it was measuring beer, line cleaning solution or water or a combination of both on 444 times out of 450 tests — 98.7%. It believes the other six times would have been identifed during the data analysis phase. The tests were carried out at Brulines test cellar/bar to enable NMO to carry out tests in a wide variety of scenarios. “These results from independent testing by the highest UK authority reaffirms that both systems are fit to provide accurate raw data for dispense monitoring purposes,” said Brulines. The company said that audit adjustments made for line cleaning purposes “understate beer dispense volumes creating a more positive variance of delivered volume over dispensed volume”. It added: “The line cleaning volumes set aside should always work in the favour of the licensee, and for cask ale an additional favourable allowance is used, as outlined in the audit process. Brulines said it “does not in any way ‘tamper with’ or ‘manipulate’ the data in favour of the pub company”. It said where a difference between recorded volumes and delivered volumes is detected, a “comprehensive review of all available data is conducted” and pubco partners use supporting evidence. Brulines added: “In summary the high level of accuracy and repeatability evidenced throughout the testing confirms that both DMS and i-draught systems are fit for the purpose of draught dispense monitoring operations including the provision of accurate raw data, trend analysis and ultimately providing the operational transparency required to manage draught beer tied compliance.” Brulines is to distribute a comprehensive guide on its equipment, following the report. Brulines chief executive James Dickson said the report should “draw a line in the sand” on the debate but acknowledged it was unlikely to deter its critics. “This industry has got a lot more to worry about tan trying to protect a few people hell bent on getting out of the tie,” he said. Dickson stressed: “We are not trigger happy. “We don’t go out chasing licensees if there is a 1% or 2% variance. “In fact we only start looking at it when it gets to 3%. Then we would carry out calibration tests and no accusations are made at that time.” He added that it was “very difficult” to stamp equipment because each pub has different conditions and the only way equipment can be calibrated is in situ.