Proficiency Test Committee        
  Activity Report   Documents   Working Programme
Chair Didier Demilly
Member Christian Boehm
Sarah Dammen
Sharon Davidson
Andrea Jonitz
Mari Jürman
Gillian McLaren
Sergio Pasquini
Zita Ripka
Benno Voit
Ruojing Wang
Rita Zecchinelli

Purity work has a long history, according to the historical papers by Hans Arne Jensen. The current purity rules in the ISTA International Rules for Seed Testing have evolved, from the first approved ISTA Rules of 1931, to the quicker method for purity testing developed in 1950, to the first pure seed descriptions of 1976.

  1. To maintain and update the ISTA Rules on purity testing.    
  2. To update and clarify these Rules, as required by member laboratories, industry bodies and others.    
  3. To provide tools and information as aids to seed identification.    
  4. To explore the possibilities of tools such as image analysis, to be implemented in the daily routine analysis in a laboratory.

There are now Pure Seed Definitions for 438 genera in the ISTA Rules and an explanation of the PSDs in the ISTA Handbook on Pure Seed Definitions. The work of the Committee focuses on the following Chapters of the ISTA Rules:
  • Chapter 2 on preparing the working sample for a test;         
  • Chapters 3 and 4 on how to perform the purity test and other seed determination;         
  • Chapter 10 on weight determination;         
  • Chapter 11 on the purity of coated seeds.


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Latest issue of Seed Testing International Issue 156

STI 156 October 2018
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Rules 2019 is now available online

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