On 13 November, representatives of the US Food & Drugs Administration (FDA) together with representatives of the Dutch Food & Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) visited the RvA. During this visit, the FDA representatives were informed about the accreditation system in the Netherlands in general and the accreditation of the NVWA laboratories in particular.
The visit took place as part of a USA-EU process to mutually accept food safety systems. The FDA visits seven EU member states to audit their food safety monitoring systems. The focus of FDA's visit to the Netherlands was mainly on the NVWA, but because accreditation plays an important role in the European system, part of the FDA team visited the RvA.
The RvA has explained the Dutch system of accreditation during this meeting. In particular, the FDA representatives were interested in the composition of the assessment teams, the method of qualifying technical experts and the way in which the RvA deals with the deviations found at the conformity assessment bodies during assessments. The procedures for handling complaints about accredited laboratories were also discussed. After discussing details about the accreditation of the NVWA, the FDA team concluded that they were satisfied with the information they had received and the insight that the RvA had provided in its working methods.