Sampling in the EU

Sampling and analysis in the EU is part of the legal framework of the EU. In various Regulations one can find procedures and guidelines of what is expected of the official control of feed and food in the Member States. In this way the necessary activities are harmonized, assuring that the results of control programs of the different control authorities are comparable, avoiding possible discussion about methods and interpretation of results.

The sampling Regulations describe how to take samples, e.g. how to take a series of samples, what number of subsamples, and how to pool these. Althought the descriptions are rather precise, it can be helpfull to see the sampling proces in action for various sampling sites, at harbours and storage sites, from lorries, containers, silos, and ships, for food of non-animal origin. To help the Inspectors, a movie was made by the Italian Ministry of Health.


The movie is available as a DVD. Its title is "Sampling Procedures. For the official control on food of non-animal origin". According to the accompanying information it was developed in the framework of the project: "practical activities and procedures for the sampling and analysis of food products and materials intended to come into contact with food in the framework of the Official Controls carried out by the Italian Maritime Air and Border Health Offices", for the benefit of the Inspectors". Its is presented in English.

As implied by the description, the video shows the practice of sampling; this part takes about 25 minutes, preceded by a 5 minutes introduction. Regarding analysis it shows how the samples are to be prepared for chemical analysis, e.g. grinding procedures. The analytical part takes about 6 minutes. Methods of analysis are not addressed in the video. 4 Minutes at the end of the video deal with references, including editors of the video.

The full DVD can be downloaded. At this moment the video can be found at the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Lazio e della Toscana. Look for the Procedure di Campionamento per il controllo ufficiale.


The sampling part of 25 minutes of the video was copied to this portal. To see this part, click on its icon.