NSF International now provides microbiological and chemical testing and evaluation of test kits used by the food, water and dietary supplement industries to help ensure safety

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – NSF International, a global public health organization which provides testing and R&D services for food, water, dietary supplements, consumer products and health care industries, has achieved Independent Laboratory status as recognized by the AOAC Research Institute (RI). This qualifies NSF International’s laboratories to test and evaluate test kits and methods submitted to the AOAC Performance Tested Methods SM (PTM) program.

NSF International’s Independent Laboratory scope includes antimicrobial, biochemical/nutritional, natural toxin, specific food allergen and microbiology testing.

To help ensure food and dietary supplement safety, it’s essential to use reliable validated analytical methods. The AOAC’s Independent Laboratories conduct independent third-party evaluation of proprietary testing methods submitted to the AOAC Research Institute by test kit manufacturers for AOAC certification. This includes evaluating methods used to test product samples for chemical and microbiological contaminants, including pathogens such as Salmonella or Listeria.

As an Independent Laboratory, NSF International, already a 17025-accredited laboratory, is now able to qualify test method performance to determine if it meets the appropriate standard for its claimed intended use. Test methods that demonstrate acceptable performance claims are granted AOAC PTM certification.

NSF International’s Applied Research Center (ARC) will manage validation for all AOAC PTM independent laboratory projects for which it is contracted. Additionally, it can serve as a technical resource for companies seeking pre-AOAC submission product evaluation and assistance in product development.

“NSF International’s Applied Research Center can offer unbiased testing and evaluation of test kits submitted to the PTM program,” said Rob Donofrio, Director, NSF International Applied Research Center. “This provides manufacturers of test kits with claims validation as well as a certified product for credibility in the market. This new laboratory status for NSF International builds on our core business areas of food, healthcare and water safety. As the projects involve a significant level of research and development expertise as well as proficiency in method validation, they are a perfect fit for the Applied Research Center.”

NSF’s Ann Arbor, Michigan-based microbiology and chemistry laboratories were selected based on laboratory expertise, accreditation and quality systems. NSF International labs hold more than 50 accreditations across multiple competencies including standards development, toxicology and risk assessment, laboratory testing, product and management systems certification and personnel training.

To earn Independent Laboratory recognition, NSF International demonstrated compliance with AOAC criteria, including verified use of AOAC-approved testing protocols, and submitted review information supporting the expertise and experience of its laboratories.

Editor’s Note: To schedule an interview with Rob Donofrio, Ph.D., Director of the NSF International Applied Research Center, please contact Liz Nowland-Margolis at media@nsf.org or 734-418-6624.

About NSF International: NSF International is a global independent organization that writes standards, and tests and certifies products for the water, food, health sciences and consumer goods industries to minimize adverse health effects and protect the environment (nsf.org). Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting human health and safety worldwide. Operating in more than 155 countries, NSF International is a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Center on Food Safety, Water Quality and Indoor Environment.

NSF’s Applied Research Center provides custom research and development services for all major industries including contract method development; testing and consulting services in chemistry, microbiology, genomics and toxicology; product claim verification; lab quality/management; methods training; and human health risk assessment.

About AOAC Research Institute: The AOAC Research Institute (RI) was incorporated in 1991 as a wholly owned subsidiary of AOAC International. The RI serves as an independent, third-party, nongovernment administrator of AOAC conformity assessment programs including the AOAC Performance Tested Methods SM (PTM) and Official Methods of Analysis SM (OMA) programs for alternative and sole source methods. Other complementary products and services include validation protocol development and RI Contributing Membership. Additionally, the RI supports AOAC standards development activities pertaining to alternative methods.