The National Centre of Food (CNA) under the Spanish Food Safety and Nutrition Agency (AESAN) is aware of the current trends and requirements with regards to quality tests and management.It is equally aware of the new power rules in the scope of the European Union. It has therefore strived and is still striving to continuously improve its processes and activity.
Therefore,under the accreditation of the National Accreditation Entity (ENAC), the National Food Centre operates in accordance with the provisions of Standard EN ISO/IEC 17025 (“General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories”).
This international Standard established the requirements that testing and calibration laboratories must meet to demonstrate that they have a quality management system, that they are technically competent and that they are capable of producing technically valid, reliable results. The first edition of Standard EN ISO/IEC 17025 came about as a result of the extensive experience that was gained through the implementation of ISO/CEI Guide 25 and European Standard EN 45001, which it subsequently replaced. In addition, it brings together all those requirements of Standard ISO 9001 that are relevant to the scope of testing and calibration services covered by the CNA’s Quality System.
Compliance with the above-mentioned standard and its development and adaptation through the Quality System established by the National Food Centre allow for the measures, tests, controls and activity undertaken in the organisation to meet the standards, regulations, specifications and applicable contracts (Client Satisfaction) in each case.
In addition, in accordance with legislation on the matter, when intervening in the Official Control of Food Products, the National Food Centre lays down its general operating principles which complement those established by the above-mentioned Standard. They include the use of standard operating procedures and verification of compliance by Quality Assurance staff in accordance with principles 7 and 2 of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) for Good Laboratory Practice.
In order to adequately deal with the growing analytic demand as a result of the National Food Centre participation in the Official Control of Foods,it is also policy of CNA management to obtain not only Accreditation for TESTS but also for TEST CATEGORIES. This means that an adequate analytical response to the functions required in this field can be provided.In this respect, the CNA has the adequate systems for the establishment, management and control of tests that come under the scope of test categories, as it incorporates those criteria established in the ENAC Technical Notes NT-18 and NT-19 for obtaining and maintaining accreditation for TEST CATEGORIES.
Complementing the previous principle,in the processes that are carried out by the National Food Centre that require non-clinical studies on substances and chemical products, the principles of Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) shall be followed relating to the mutual acceptance of chemical product assessment data.