Accreditation Process        
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Auditing for ISTA Accreditation ensures that a laboratory conforms with regulatory requirements.

Document review
First accreditation: Laboratories/sampling entities audited for the first time must submit their quality documentation, or parts of it, to the ISTA Accreditation and Technical Department. These documents are subject to review by ISTA auditors. When the documents are considered suitable, an audit date is agreed with the laboratory. 
Re-accreditation: ISTA-accredited laboratories/ sampling entities that are to be re-audited will be approached by the Accreditation and Technical Department well in advance. They must submit their quality documentation, at least four weeks prior to the agreed audit date.   

ISTA Audit
The purpose of the audit is to evaluate that a laboratory/sampling entity operates in conformity with the specifications outlined in the ISTA Accreditation Standard. It also offers confidence in the capability of the laboratory’s management system, ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements. Auditors are appointed by ISTA’s Accreditation and Technical Department.

An on-site assessment takes up to one and a half working days, depending on the scope of accreditation. During the on-site assessment relevant aspects regarding staff, facilities and seed sampling and or testing are examined. The identified non-conformities must be addressed through a formal corrective action procedure following the on-site assessment.

Accreditation approval procedure
Provided the requirements of the ISTA Accreditation Standard are met, the auditors will recommend that the Accreditation is granted to the laboratory/sampling entity. The ISTA Executive Committee is responsible for accreditation decisions, on the basis of information gathered during the process and the recommendations of the auditors. When the accreditation has been approved then the Certificate of Accreditation is issued.

Authorisation to issue ISTA Certificates
An accredited laboratory is authorised to issue ISTA Certificates, in accordance with the scope of its ISTA Accreditation. This authorisation is valid for three years, starting from the date of the on-site assessment.   For more detailed information on the Accreditation process, read the document How to become an ISTA-accredited laboratory.


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