Consumer Affairs Minister, Food and Public Distribution, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan launched the Bureau of India Standards (BIS) online National Laboratory Directory on 30 August 2019. BIS is the government’s standard-setting body and it sets standards which match international standards. The online directory will provide information about the Indian standards of various products as well as testing facilities. Secretaries from consumer affairs and commerce ministries, special secretary from the home affairs ministry as well as Chief of Quality Control of India and FSSAI CEO, Mr Pawan Agarwal were also present at the event.
The BIS National Lab Directory will cater to the testing needs of industries, academia, researchers and other stakeholders. Mr. Paswan stated that the “directory is a one-stop solution for all testing requirements and houses information about all testing facilities available in the country today. Even consumers can use the available information to test the quality of any of the products that they are using.
There are estimated 10,000 labs across the country. Currently, about 4,500 labs owned by public and private academic institutions have been listed on the online directory.The Bureau of Indian Standards owns only eight labs but recognises 208 labs, which are National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL)certified. BIS has 200 more labs that are special purpose labs that are BIS Recognised/Empanelled Labs and Hallmarking Labs. The labs which arerecognised/notified by FSSAI, APEDA, EIC will be indicated accordingly.
The Director General of BIS Surina Rajan pointed out that the directory provides detailed information about which products can be tested against which standards both national and international. Anyone can get information about testing requirements and locations of testing labs in the country, whether they are individual users, entrepreneurs, exporters and manufacturing companies. Companies can use the directory to improve the quality dimension and quality certification.