AMTEC-UPLB gears up for laboratories’ ISO 17025 accreditation

by: Lawrence Neil E. Sagarino

A two-day training course on PNS ISO/IEC 17025:2017, also known as the “General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories,” was held in hyflex setup at the AMTEC Conference Room and Zoom, on November 24, 2023, and January 26, 2024. The training aims to prepare the Center and its laboratories as it plans to apply for the international standards’ accreditation.

Mr. Admer Rey C. Dablio of the Standard and Testing Division (STD) of the Industrial Technology Development Institute, Department of Science and Technology (DOST-ITDI), also a DTI-PAB accreditor, was invited as the resource speaker of the training.

Dr. Arthur L. Fajardo (AMTEC Director), Engr. Marie Jehosa B. Reyes (in-charge of AMTEC’s Mechanical Testing Laboratory), Engr. Fatima Joy J. Raytana-Aying (in-charge of AMTEC’s Sample Analysis Laboratory), and Engr. Feliciano P. Mendoza Jr. (AMTEC Quality Assurance Coordinator), led all engineers and staff, including those in the Visayas and Mindanao satellite offices, who participated in the said activity. A representative from the university’s Department of Industrial Engineering (CEAT-DIE) was also present.

The two-part training tackled the essentials of the operations in a laboratory according to ISO 17025. It mainly revolved around establishing the Quality Management System (QMS) of the laboratories, which particularly includes documentation, personnel management, and other vital laboratory procedures from receiving samples to releasing test reports.

As the premiere and reference testing center of agri-fishery machinery in the Philippines, the Center constantly ensures that all operations maintain quality results and would ripple development in the agriculture sector. Thus, adhering to international standards assures AMTEC-UPLB’s commitment to become a globally competitive testing center for agri-fishery machinery.

The activity was funded by the UPLB College of Engineering and Agro-industrial Technology (CEAT) Dean’s Office’s Future-Proofing Fund, which aims to support its academic units to maintain and continuously improve its services for its constituents and stakeholders.

Meanwhile, the training served as the formal kick-off of the Center as it gears toward the compliance of its laboratories to the said standards and as it eventually undergoes internal audits and external assessments for relevant accreditation. It aspires to make its testing laboratories accredited under ISO.

AMTEC-UPLB has a crucial role in the country’s agriculture and fisheries industry. It signifies the vitality of a highly competent system in the processes carried out by the Center and one way to achieve this is by adhering to ISO/IEC 17025 which emphasizes competence, impartiality, and consistent operation of laboratories.

As the Center moves forward to continue serving the Philippine agriculture sector in the years to come, it pledges to maintain and consistently improve testing and evaluation operations by capacitating its facilities and staff according to quality standards.