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Dietary Supplement Analysis Quality Assurance Program


The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has established a Dietary Supplement Quality Assurance Program (DSQAP) in collaboration with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS). Participants measure concentrations of active and/or marker compounds and nutritional and toxic elements in samples distributed by NIST. Data are compiled at NIST where they are analyzed for accuracy, precision, and concordance within the community. Reports and certificates of completion are sent to participants, and workshops are held to discuss results as well as methodological advancements in the characterization of dietary supplements.


Approximately 75 % of the U.S. population takes dietary supplements, including vitamins and mineral supplements, representing an annual expenditure of more than $20 billion. Regulations driven by reported cases of inaccurate labeling, adulteration, contamination (with pesticides, heavy metals, or toxic botanicals), and drug interactions are now in place that require manufactures to evaluate the identity, purity, and composition of their ingredients and finished products. In 2007 a Dietary Supplements Quality Assurance Program (DSQAP) was initiated to enable participants to improve the accuracy and precision of their measurements for nutrients, marker compounds, toxic elements, and/or pesticides in dietary supplement ingredients and finished products. Two intercomparison exercises are planned each year, with three to five samples distributed in each exercise. Samples prepared and distributed by NIST are paired with control materials allowing the participants to evaluate in-house analytical methodology prior to the characterization of the unknown material.

The intercomparison exercises, data reports, and workshops are designed to provide participating laboratories with the tools to evaluate their dietary supplement analytical methodology. Information gained through participation may be used by the participants to demonstrate “appropriateness” of analytical methodology to regulatory agencies and to improve the quality of information associated with dietary supplement products through increased measurement capabilities.

For more information, click here.

Start Date:

October 1, 2006

End Date:


Lead Organizational Unit:



National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements
Adam Nutrition, Mira Loma, CA
Alacer Corporation, Foothill Ranch, CA
Alkemists Laboratories, Costa Mesa, CA
ALS Laboratory Group, Salt Lake City, UT
BCIT, Burnaby, BC
BI Nutraceuticals, Long Beach, CA
Cawthron Institute, Nelson, New Zealand
Chromadex, Inc., Boulder, CO
Covance Laboratories, Inc., Madison, WI
Dionex Corporation, Sunnyvale, CA
Eurofins Steins Laboratorium, Veden, Denmark
Exova Inc., Santa Fe Springs, CA
FCMDL U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Beltsville, MD
Food and Drug Administration, Atlanta, GA
Food and Drug Administration, Jamaica, NY
Health Canada, Longueuil, Quebec
Health Canada, Scarborough, Ontario
Industrial laboratories, Wheatridge, CO
Natural Factors Nutritional Products Inc., Coquitlam, BC
Nature's Way, Springville, UT
Nestle, Vers Chez les Blanc, Switzerland
Nestle Quality Assurance Laboratory, Dublin, OH
NSF International, Ann Arbor, MI
Nutra Manufacturing, Greenville, SC
Nutraceutical Corp., Ogden, UT
Nutrilite, Buena Park, CA
Pharmanex, Provo, UT
Pickering Laboratories, Inc, Mountain View, CA
Research and Productivity Council, Fredericton, NB
Schwabe North America, Green Bay, WI
Shaklee Corporation, Hayward, CA
Silliker JR Labs, Burnaby, BC
Standard Process, Inc., Palmyra, WI
West Chester University, West Chester, PA


Melissa M. Phillips
Phone 301-975-4134

Catherine A. Rimmer
Phone 301-975-3651

Laura J. Wood
Phone 301-975-4111