The process of achieving ISO accreditation includes passing an assessment and review of the lab’s quality management system and competence to perform specific tests
NOW has received ISO/IEC 17025:2017 accreditation from the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA) for both the analytical and microbiological laboratories. The accreditation confirms the company meets technical and quality benchmarks required by ISO/IEC 17025:2017.
The process of achieving ISO accreditation includes passing an assessment and review of the lab’s quality management system and competence to perform specific tests. Given different regulatory requirements throughout the world, and the recent discussion of ISO accreditation for dietary supplement sellers on Amazon, the company decided to add ISO accreditation to its existing range of third-party certifications.
“NOW has spent a lot of time and resources over the last decade building up our in-house lab capabilities and expertise to ensure that the data coming out of our labs has integrity, which is crucial because we make regulatory and business decisions every day based on this data,” said Aaron Secrist, Executive VP of Quality, R&D and Operations, NOW Health Group. “We have built our in-house labs into a very strong competitive advantage, not only because of the increased ability for us to test the incoming ingredients and finished products much faster than a contract lab ever could, but we are also able to validate our test methods against each of our thousand or so specific finished product matrices, something contract labs could never do for each company they service in an economical way.”
The scope of accreditation includes arsenic speciation in raw materials and finished products by HPLC-ICP-MS; determination of acid value by titration; determination of peroxide value by FoodLabFat; metal and mineral testing by ICP-MS (arsenic, cadmium, iodine, lead and mercury); and multi-pesticide residue analysis by GC-MS/MS for 195 pesticides.
“We chose the scopes that we did because I have seen many labs pick the easiest and most basic test method and matrix in order to be able to say that they are an ISO/IEC 17025 accredited lab, even if the majority of the testing they do is outside of the scope of their accreditation,” Secrist said. “We wanted the accreditation to be meaningful, so we chose some of the most complex methods that we run, most of which have been developed in house, as well as a couple of simple ones.”
These are the first of many methods the company plans to add to the scope of accreditation, it says.