What types of samples are there in QS residue monitoring?

There are four different kind of samples, of which only the mandatory samples can be used to fulfil the sampling requests/sample target:

  • Mandatory sample: The mandatory sample serve to fulfil the sampling requests displayed in the QS database (coordinators) or the annual sample target, which is calculated on the basis of the quantity of purchased QS goods (wholesale, preparation/processing, food retail). Mandatory samples must at least meet the requirements of the control plan in terms of the scope of analysis. In addition to the obligatory methods, further analysis methods can be ordered if required. The samples must be taken from products ready for harvest or sale.

  • Release sample: If a producer/location has been blocked for the delivery of a product into the QS scheme due to a complaint, a release sample can be used to unblock the producer/location. When registering a release sample, at least the active substance that was the subject of the complaint must be analysed. Release samples must have been taken after the sample with complaint was taken and the sampled product must be from the same field/greenhouse. If the product is no longer available from the relevant field/greenhouse, the field/greenhouse from which the crop is harvested next shall be sampled.

  • Voluntary sample: In addition to the mandatory samples, you have the possibility to add voluntarily further samples to the QS database. When registering voluntary samples, you can select freely the analysis methods or parameters of interest. Voluntary samples are also checked by QS for compliance with the maximum residue levels and the approval of the detected active substances.
  • Pre-harvest sample: Pre-harvest samples are products that are not yet ready for harvest or sale. These samples can be taken to estimate the residue situation in the product. When registering pre-harvest samples, the analysis methods can be selected freely.

Note: The evaluation tools of the QS database can be used for example, to evaluate your suppliers or for risk assessment of the product.


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