ICA Bremen – the global centre for cotton testing, research and quality related issues – has launched a new ‘International Laboratory Certification Scheme’.
Firms can now apply to have their laboratories certified by ICA Bremen. The scheme will assess cotton testing laboratories across the globe. Each laboratory will have to meet a level of quality assurance based on specific criteria, including laboratory conditioning, calibration, testing procedures and strong performance in Round Trials conducted under the auspices of the Task Force on Commercial Standardization of Instrument Testing of Cotton (CSITC) formed by the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC). Once certified, they will become a ‘laboratory of choice’ to resolve quality disputes in line with ICA Bylaws & Rules.
ICA Bremen is confident that the new scheme will raise the bar in the quality testing arena and that it will bring significant benefits to the cotton trade, both for laboratories and end users. “By certifying a laboratory, ICA Bremen is effectively giving its ‘stamp of approval’ and confirming that it meets our high standards,” said Kai Hughes, ICA Bremen’s Managing Director. “For laboratories, certification represents credibility and competence plus recognition and competitive advantage right across the cotton community. In addition, as part of the process, our experts offer advice and information to help laboratories achieve and maintain the set standard.
“The scheme gives the end user confidence in choosing a certified laboratory, as well as offering them more choice. It reinforces a trusted and internationally recognised mechanism for the resolution of quality disputes through a clearly defined quality procedure.”
Terry Townsend, Executive Director of ICAC, added, “The laboratory certification scheme further strengthens the role of instrument testing in cotton marketing, thus contributing to the increased competitiveness of the entire cotton marketing system. I welcome the establishment of the certification scheme and hope that eventually all laboratories will meet the highest testing standards as represented by ICA Bremen certification.”