Vol. 22, No. 2
Report on the EURACHEM 10th Anniversary Meeting and the EURACHEM Full
16-19 June 1999
A. Fajgelj has submitted the following report:
As a member of the EURACHEM Committee and as the IUPAC
liaison person, I attended the annual meeting of EURACHEM. This year,
EURACHEM celebrates the 10th anniversary of its founding, and a one-day
conference was organized on this occasion. I gave an invited oral presentation
on "Current and future programs of IUPAC".
A network of organizations in Europe, EURACHEM was established
in 1989 to provide a system for the international traceability of chemical
measurements and to promote good quality assurance practices. It provides
a forum for the discussion of common problems and for developing an
informed and considered approach to both technical and policy issues.
EURACHEM today comprises 18 full members (European and European Free
Trade Association [EFTA] countries) and 10 associate members. There
are also 11 observer or liaison organizations (AOAC International, Cooperation
on International Traceability in Analytical Chemistry [CITAC], EUROLAB,
Association of European Institutes for Metrology [EUROMET], Consultative
Committee on Amount of Substance [CCQM], European Accreditation [EA],
International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation [ILAC], IUPAC, etc.).
The goals of EURACHEM are to:
- promote best practices and develop networks for collaboration,
- develop international comparability of chemical measurements,
- provide a framework for cooperation in establishing traceability,
- establish national EURACHEM groups and provide input to other international
- raise awareness among decision makers and develop broad-based education
Most of the work of EURACHEM is carried out by Working
Groups (WGs). At the moment, there are four active WGs: Education and
Training, Measurement Uncertainty, Reference Materials, and Proficiency
Testing. The WGs mainly organize workshops and produce guides. The following
guides have been published by EURACHEM alone or in cooperation with
- Accreditation for Chemical Laboratories, Guidance on the Interpretation
of the EN 45000 Series of Standards and ISO/IEC Guide 25, EURACHEM/WELAC
- Accreditation for Laboratories Performing Microbiological Testing,
- Quantifying Uncertainty in Analytical Measurement, EURACHEM
- Quality Assurance for Research and Development and Nonroutine
Analysis, EURACHEM/CITAC Guide (1998)
- The Fitness for Purpose of Analytical Methods, A Laboratory Guide
to Method Validation and Related Topics, EURACHEM (1998).
These guides have gained a large international acceptance
and are also followed in the countries that are not official members
EURACHEM's program includes workshops on traceability
(Bratislava, 1999), QA and computers (Berlin, 1999), reference materials
(Berlin, 2000), proficiency testing (Boras, 2000), and sampling (Delft,
2001). The most important work regarding the EURACHEM guides will be
the revision of the guide Accreditation for Chemical Laboratories,
Guidance on the Interpretation of the EN 45000 Series of Standards and
ISO/IEC Guide 25 (1993), which should reflect the changes of the
ISO Guide 25 that is now being transferred to the ISO 17025 Standard.
In the last three years, a strong cooperation between
IUPAC's Interdivisional Working Party on Harmonization of Quality Assurance
Schemes for Analytical Laboratories and EURACHEM has been established.
As a result, IUPAC's recently published Harmonized Guidelines for the
Use of Recovery Information in Analytical Measurement (Pure
Vol. 71, No. 2, pp. 337-348, 1999) have been endorsed by EURACHEM.
Future cooperation was also foreseen at the Workshop on Principles and
Practices of Method Validation held in November 1999, in Budapest, Hungary,
where EURACHEM was also formally represented.