More than 350 participants attended the seminar on sampling organized by Polish Centre for Accreditation on the first day of 16th International Trade Fair of Analytical, Measurement and Control Technology (Warsaw, 12-14 March 2014).
"The matter that we are going to present today has been intensively discussed for a long time, both within the European Union and at the forums provided by worldwide organizations associating national accreditation bodies: ILAC and IAF” – said Lucyna Olborska, Deputy Director of Polish Centre for Accreditation, in her address opening the seminar entitled: “Sampling in the activity of the accredited conformity assessment bodies”.
The seminar was made up of six presentations delivered by Lucyna Olborska and PCA experts from Testing Laboratories Accreditation Department and Certification and Inspection Bodies Accreditation Department.
The first presentation "The object of conformity assessment versus sample of assessment’s object” concerned the importance and role of sampling in all areas of conformity assessment activities of testing laboratories, inspection bodies and certification bodies. It was stressed that the representative samples ought to be taken of the whole batch of products or materials that are subject to testing; only then would the test results be reliable enough for use in conformity assessment of products. Without such representative sampling, it would not be possible to use the results to assess the whole batch.
In the second presentation, titled "The process of sampling – its plans, procedures, quality assurance and documentation”, special emphasis was put on faults in sampling that could undermine the analyst’s effort and incur additional costs. The results of the analysis might then only be applicable to the sample itself and not the whole object of the assessment. Failure to understand this could often lead to making wrong decisions.
The third presentation concerned two topics: "Sampling versus handling of test items” and “Documenting of test results, including sampling”.
The fourth presentation was titled "Selected issues related to sampling in the inspection activity”.
In the next presentation, “Accreditation of sampling activity”, the issue of lack of international accreditation requirements for sampling as a stand-alone activity was brought up. In this area it is the accreditation body that can develop its own solution.
"Sampling in the certification activity” was the final presentation which was provided by Lucyna Olborska, who concentrated on sampling in the activity of the accredited certification bodies in two areas: organic farming and integrated plant production.
After the seminar, at PCA stand, many participants took the opportunity to discuss with speakers all matters of particular interest. The stand was very popular among the visitors throughout the whole Fair which was due to the availability of PCA experts providing the requested information.