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  1. Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)

Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods (LAAF) Program & Final Rule

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Voluntary Graphic Element & QR Code

Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods Program

The Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods (LAAF) Program establishes a laboratory accreditation program for the testing of food in certain circumstances. Under the LAAF program, FDA will recognize “accreditation bodies” that will have the responsibility of accrediting “LAAF-accredited laboratories” to the standards established by the rule. In certain circumstances, owners and consignees will be required to use a LAAF-accredited laboratory for food testing.

The establishment of the LAAF program is intended to improve the accuracy and reliability of certain food testing through the uniformity of standards and enhanced FDA oversight of participating laboratories.

Structures of the Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods (LAAF) Program

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Recognized Accreditation Bodies may accredit laboratories to conduct food testing under this program once they receive recognition from FDA. 

Testing laboratories may apply directly to one of the recognized accreditation bodies to seek LAAF-accreditation.

Owners and consignees will be required to use a LAAF-accredited laboratory for food testing:

  • to support removal of a food from an import alert through successful consecutive testing requirements;
  • to support admission of an imported food detained at the border because it is or appears to be in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act;
  • required by existing FDA food safety regulations, when applied to address an identified or suspected food safety problem (i.e., certain tests of shell eggs, sprouts, and bottled drinking water);
  • required by a directed food laboratory order, a new procedure being implemented in this final rule that will allow FDA to require use of a LAAF-accredited laboratory to address an identified or suspected food safety problem in certain, rare circumstances; and
  • conducted in connection with certain administrative processes such as testing submitted in connection with an appeal of an administrative detention order.

The FDA has determined that there is sufficient laboratory capacity in the LAAF program for the import-related food testing covered by the LAAF regulation (§ 1.1107(a)(4) and (5)) for those analyte groups listed on the LAAF Dashboard LAAF-Compliance Dates Table located at: FDA Dashboards - Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods Program. As sufficient capacity is reached for additional analytes covered under the import-related food testing provisions of the LAAF regulation, those specific analytes and compliance dates will be posted on the LAAF Dashboard. Owners and consignees of imported food subject to the LAAF regulation must use a LAAF-accredited laboratory to conduct covered import-related food testing starting on the applicable compliance date, which is 6 months from the date a specific analyte is listed on a public registry, based on FDA’s determination that sufficient laboratory capacity has been achieved for such analyte.  

We will continue stepwise implementation of the LAAF program for other food testing circumstances in which owners and consignees are required to use a LAAF-accredited laboratory. FDA has not yet made a capacity determination for the other food testing circumstances covered by the LAAF regulation. We will publish one or more additional notices in the Federal Register when the LAAF program attains sufficient laboratory capacity to support the food testing described in § 1.1107(a)(1)-(3).

Program Application

LAAF Program Dashboard

View LAAF Participant Information

  • Recognized Accreditation Bodies
  • LAAF-Accredited Labs
  • LAAF-Accredited Laboratory Scopes

LAAF Portal

Create accounts and upload documentation for Recognized Accreditation bodies and LAAF-Accredited Labs.

Final Rule

The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) final rule on Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods (LAAF) establishes a laboratory accreditation program for the testing of food in certain circumstances. Under the LAAF program, FDA will recognize accreditation bodies (ABs) that will accredit laboratories to the standards established in the final rule (referred to as LAAF-accredited laboratories).

The final rule specifies eligibility requirements that ABs and laboratories wishing to participate in the program will need to satisfy, as well as procedures for how the FDA will manage and oversee the program. In certain circumstances, owners and consignees will be required to use a LAAF-accredited laboratory for food testing. FDA will maintain an online public registry listing recognized accredited bodies and LAAF-accredited laboratories.

The establishment of the LAAF program is intended to improve the accuracy and reliability of certain food testing through the uniformity of standards and enhanced FDA oversight of participating laboratories.

For additional information on the final rule, see


Resources 

Contact Us

For Questions about the LAAF Program Requirements and Eligibility, contact: FSMA Technical Assistance Network (TAN)

For Questions about the LAAF Program Application and Implementation, contact: FDALAAFInquiry@fda.hhs.gov


Voluntary Graphic Element & QR Code

Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Food (LAAF) Program Web Badge 240x120px

A LAAF program QR code is available to assist FDA and stakeholders with communicating the status of participants in the LAAF program.

LAAF graphic elements are available to help increase awareness of the LAAF program.

Download these materials and read these guidelines for using them by visiting Voluntary Graphic Element & QR Code Guidelines.

 
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