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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
A new report provides guidelines for a correct sample preparation during GMO analysis on food, feed, seed, plants and propagating material samples. Sample preparation, a key step between sampling and analysis, has so far suffered from a lack of guidance and harmonisation. The new guidelines provide details and practical hints which will contribute to foster harmonised test results in the official controls conducted by National Reference Laboratories (NRLs). The guidelines cover the major steps of sample preparation, i.e. the size of laboratory samples, the mass reduction techniques including techniques for comminution and mixing; considerations about the test portion are covered and some performance tests to be applied at different steps of the process are provided.
The report is the result of collaboration between the European Network of GMO Laboratories (ENGL) and the European Union Reference Laboratory for GM Food and Feed (EURL GMFF).
The European Network of GMO Laboratories (ENGL) plays an eminent role in the development, harmonisation and standardisation of means and methods for sampling, detection, identification and quantification of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in a wide variety of products, ranging from seeds, grains, to food and feed stuff. The network consists of about one-hundred national enforcement laboratories from all EU Member States. Chairmanship and Secretariat of the ENGL are provided by JRC's Molecular Biology and Genomics Unit.