The Laboratory for Seed Testing participates in the implementation of research projects and provides individuals, state owned institutions and private companies with comprehensive laboratory services, using modern equipment in the analyses of seed quality of field and vegetable crops, grasses and medicinal plants.
The Laboratory for Seed Testing conducts analyses of the following parameters of seed quality:
- Physical and physiological seed traits – seed purity, seed germination, seed moisture content, 1000 seed weight, seed viability.
- Seed health – detection of fungi, bacteria and viruses
- Verification of cultivars and hybrids – identification and determination of genetic uniformity of seeds of maize, sunflower, soybean, wheat, barley and other crops, based on reserve proteins and functional proteins – isoenzymes.
- GMO detection – quantitative and qualitative detection of genetic modification (GM) in plant materials and foods using Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). Qualitative analysis of GM enables detection of genetic modification in a sample, as well as determining the type of genetic modification in soybean, maize, rapeseed, sugar beet, and rice.
ACCREDITATION AND AUTHORIZATION
The Laboratory for Seed Testing was accredited in 2003 by the Yugoslav Accreditation Body (JUAT), according to the standard ISO/IEC 17025 and the Decision No.01-071. The Accreditation Body of Serbia (ATS) approves reaccreditation for a four-year period. The laboratory was accredited by the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) in 2000, and has been reaccredited for a period of three years since. The most recent ISTA reaccreditation was approved to the Laboratory for Seed Testing in 2021.
Organization of laboratory activity and competence of each staff member has significantly improved after the ISTA accreditation. The laboratory participates in ISTA interlaboratory comparisons with other accredited laboratories regarding the methods within its scope of accreditation. Quality system thereby promotes laboratory development as the key to maintain its competitive advantage in the fierce international market.
The Plant Protection Directorate, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management granted the Laboratory for Seed Testing authorization to issue OECD certificates which are, as well as ISTA certificates, the important export documents in international seed trade.
The Laboratory for Seed Testing employs 24 staff members: 5 PhDs, 6 BScs, 3 technical assistants, 9 laboratory analysts and one administrative assistant. Between 7,000 and 9,000 samples are tested every year.
Seed testing methods change according to the advancement of scientific knowledge. Our researchers monitor the global trends, introduce new seed testing methods, and provide the service that guarantees high quality seed production and protection.