Earlier this year, the NCDA&CS Constable Laboratory in Raleigh became ISO 17025 certified in both chemical and biological testing. Four years of hard work culminated in a ceremony for lab workers last week at the N.C. Museum of Art.
Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, Chief Deputy Commissioner David Smith, Assistant Commissioner Howard Isley, Food and Drug Protection Director Dan Ragan and Lab Supervisor Audrey Pilkington all spoke about the importance of the certification to the state’s economy and food safety program.
“The job of our Food and Drug staff is to protect the health and welfare of consumers, protect the environment and ensure compliance with the regulatory and legal requirements of products,” Troxler told the crowd. “Having accurate and reliable lab data is a critical part of the process. Being an accredited lab adds an increased assurance of credible, traceable and defensible data. This should help speed up recall efforts that result from our test results as our data can be accepted by our federal partners such as FDA, USDA and EPA. In the event of a situation involving food contamination, fast and accurate test data is essential to minimizing illnesses, saving lives, determining how widespread the contamination is, and restoring consumer confidence once the problem has been resolved.”
ISO 17025 accreditation addresses factors relevant to the lab’s ability to produce precise, accurate and defensible test data. It is an accreditation that is recognized around the world, and could help with marketing N.C. products internationally. The Constable Lab is one of nine state labs across the country to have achieved one ISO 17025 accreditation. It is one of only five in the country to have achieved both.
Carl Sciacchitano from the Food and Drug Administration was on hand to present the department with a plaque recognizing the lab’s excellence.
The plaque reads:
Recognition of Excellence
In recognition for achieving International Standard ISO/IEC 17025:2005 Chemical and Biological accreditation.
Obtaining this accreditation demonstrates your ongoing commitment to protecting public health through effective management practices assuring the precision, accuracy and repeatability of results from your laboratory.
Presented by: U.S. Food and Drug Administration