Montana Laboratory Achieves National Certification
July 11, 2019 | Reenal Doshi
Olney, MT – Americans for Safe Access (ASA) is pleased to announce that Stillwater Laboratory of Olney, MT has been certified for laboratory analysis of cannabis products under ASA’s Patient Focused Certification (PFC) program and ISO/IEC 17025 through a dual accreditation program conducted with the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA). PFC is a project of ASA and is the only nonprofit, third-party certification program for the cannabis industry based on quality standards issued by the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) and the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP).
The AHP Cannabis Inflorescence Monograph and the AHPA cannabis guidelines offer the most comprehensive regulatory and product safety guidance as well as best business practices for the production of cannabis and cannabis products. Since the release of AHPA’s guidelines in 2012 and the cannabis monograph in 2013, components of these guidance documents have been included in several states’ regulations. Recently, ASA announced a joint collaboration with A2LA to expand PFC by offering a new accreditation program based on the requirements of both ISO/IEC 17025 and the PFC program.
"Stillwater Labs is honored to have received dual PFC/ISO 17025 accreditation,” said Dr. Ron Brost, Laboratory Director. “ISO 17025-compliant quality processes are the backbone of our lab, but the cannabis-specific standards that come with PFC are a much-needed addition to the emergent medical marijuana testing world. To this end, PFC requirements have been adopted as an essential part of our toolbox for continuous improvement. We look forward to our ongoing relationship with A2LA and ASA in this very important segment of the medical marijuana establishment.”
Stillwater Labs is the first laboratory to be awarded certification in Montana to engage in the PFC and A2LA dual program. “We’re very excited to continue to grow the PFC program through our dual accreditation with A2LA, and we’re thrilled that a lab of Stillwater’s caliber is representing the program” said Heather Despres, the Director of Patient Focused Certification. Montana’s overall product safety rating was a “B-” in ASA’s 2018 State of the States Report, and Stillwater Labs continues to work toward improving the state’s rating by implementing the best practices outlined under PFC certification and through their commitment to ensuring that high quality cannabis products are available to patients.
To achieve PFC certification, laboratories must pass two assessments each cycle. Assessments involve a facility inspection and document review for criteria such as method validation reports, employee training records, and other requirements that are applicable by law. PFC is an international training, education, and certification program that has formed partnerships with accreditation bodies and standards groups such as A2LA, ASTM International, AHPA, and the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute (ICCI).