–Institute fails to outreach people due to non-commercial status
LAHORE: Ayub Agricultural Research Institute (AARI) Faisalabad has successfully completed the project titled ‘Accreditation of AARI Laboratories for ISO-17025’ in 21 different laboratories as the institute struggles to reach stakeholders due to the unavailability of commercialisation status.
Only a few of laboratories out of 21 are directly providing services to general farmers, importers and exporters, it was learnt on Wednesday.
Pakistan Today learnt that the Punjab government had started the project in December 2016 to enable the international accreditation of ISO 17025 ((ISO/IEC 17025:2005 is internationally recognised standard for the independent accreditation of laboratories) at 21 AARI laboratories.
The other intentions of the project were to improve the working and services delivery of fibre testing laboratory, rice technology laboratory, biotechnology laboratory, cereal technology laboratory, soil and water testing laboratories and pesticide quality control laboratories.
It was also aimed that the analytical services will be provided to the stakeholders at par with international standards.
A report, copy available with Pakistan Today, states, “All 21 laboratories has successfully achieved ISO 17025 accreditation, which demonstrates that laboratories have qualified staff, precise equipment, adequate quality assurance … accurate recording and reporting and controlled lab environment.”
As per PC-I the project would have been commenced on 01 July 2016 but it actually started on 19 December 2016, with at least 5 months delay, it said, adding the difference between financial demand (Rs120.614 million) and actual expenditure (Rs74.861m) shows lack of proper planning”.
The project completed within timelines on 30 June 2018.
“Only a few of laboratories are directly providing services to general farmers, importers and exporters due to the unavailability of commercialization status,” the report stated, citing delays in recruitment process for some posts.
The management explained that the recruitment was delayed because of revision of eligibility criteria for the said posts, which was approved in minutes of the DDSC meeting held on June 12, 2017,” it concluded.
Faisalabad Genetically Modified Organisms Testing Laboratory Director Zafar Iqbal said, “Authenticated information generates reliable results. Accreditation is a kind of guarantee that the laboratories have international test methods, qualified personals, precise equipment and required infrastructure.