Reliable laboratory analyses are crucial for a trustworthy feed chain, as well as to our shared ambition of Feed Safety Worldwide. Two years after the launch of our standard for the registration of laboratories, we are happy to report good progress is being made.
Johan den Hartog
Managing Director, GMP+ International
Inaccurate or false analysis results undermine public faith in the strength of the entire feed chain, while it also endangers feed safety itself. Several incidents related to inaccurate analysis results in the past led us to start ‘GMP+ B11 Protocol for GMP+ registration for Laboratories’ in 2018. This standard enables laboratories to assure that the results of their analyses of critical contaminants within GMP+ FSA are reliable. GMP+ B11 consists of a quality management system and a set of performance criteria to ensure the reliability of the analysis results.
From the outset, there were some doubts within the feed industry whether this would actually work out. One of the main arguments was that ISO/IEC 17025 already covers laboratory testing. This was correct. But ISO allows laboratories to decide for themselves which performance criteria to use. This absence of a common baseline for reliability led to confusion and different results in the first place. People also doubted whether each and every lab would be able to comply with the requirements.
We welcomed all feedback and criticisms as it helped us create a scope that was both helpful and workable. Besides that, we conducted a public consultation before we established GMP+ B11. And while some laboratories took a wait-and-see approach, others immediately sensed an opportunity for a competitive edge.
Now, two years into the programme, 174 laboratories in 32 countries around the world are registered for GMP+ B11. On top is Eurofins with almost 40 and SGS with 16 registered laboratories. We are happy with this progress. However, we are still working on a greater adoption of the standard in some regions, like Russia and Middle East. We also hope for more laboratories in Asia to be registered soon. The growing interest for GMP+ FSA certification in these regions leads to a greater demand for laboratory testing capacity.
GMP+ B11 establishes the minimum level of reliability which was previously missing. We believe certified laboratories are now better suited to serve their GMP+ FSA certified customers, who in turn are now better able to ensure the safety of their feed products.