· 2 min read
Supplement and Vitamin Certification
In the last decade, the dietary and nutritional supplements industry has grown tremendously. The fact that these products do not receive the same regulation as prescription or over-the-counter drugs raises questions in the minds of many consumers. This is why NSF developed the nation's first independent testing standard and product certification program strictly for dietary supplements. The program protects consumers by testing for harmful levels of contaminants and certifying that supplements contain the ingredients listed on the label and nothing else.
How Supplements Become NSF Certified
NSF certifies products against NSF/ANSI 173, the only American National Standard that establishes requirements for the ingredients in dietary and nutritional supplements. There are three main components of the NSF dietary supplements certification program:
- Label claim review to certify that what’s on the label is in the bottle
- Toxicology review to certify product formulation (we don’t test for efficacy)
- Contaminant review to ensure the product contains no undeclared ingredients or unacceptable levels of contaminants
Special Requirements for Sports Supplements
In addition to certification under NSF/ANSI 173, supplements specifically intended for use by athletes are evaluated to NSF Certified for Sport®. This program helps protect against the adulteration of products and verifies label claims against product contents. NSF screens supplements for 280 substances banned by most major athletic organizations as well as undeclared ingredients including stimulants, narcotics, steroids, diuretics, beta-2-agonists, masking agents and other substances.
The NSF Certified for Sport® is recognized by the NFL, NFL Players Association, MLB, MLB Players Association, PGA, LPGA and Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sports.
A Truly Independent Program
NSF is the only independent, third-party testing organization that offers true testing of dietary supplements. NSF does not simply evaluate test data submitted by manufacturers or analyze just a single sample of a product and give it our okay. We conduct product testing in our own accredited laboratories to confirm that the actual contents of the supplement product match those printed on the label. We also check to make sure no unlisted ingredients or potentially harmful levels of impurities are present in products that carry our certification.
With NSF certification, you get the continued assurance that only our ongoing testing programs can provide. Unlike some other programs, NSF conducts annual audits and periodically retests each dietary supplement to ensure continued compliance against the toughest testing standard in existence today.