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AACC Laboratory Proficiency Rating Program

Participation in a proficiency rating program is a key quality requirement for analytical testing laboratories. Established in 1948, The AACC Laboratory Proficiency Rating Program provides an essential tool for food and feed laboratories worldwide.

This Program enables subscribers to assess and meet their quality standards by evaluating the ​accuracy and consistency of laboratory results. It offers samples of current interest, proficiency rating reports, and awards.

The Program

The AACC Laboratory Proficiency Program provides samples pertaining to analyses of current interest that enable laboratories to:

  • Verify laboratory equipment operation
  • Monitor the use of correct analytical techniques by laboratory personnel
  • Verify the reliability of contract laboratories
  • Ensure the accuracy of labeling information
  • Identify opportunities to improve laboratory quality

What You Can Expect

As a subscriber to the Laboratory Proficiency Rating Program, your laboratory will receive:

  • Samples
    • Sent monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly
  • Protocols
    • The Protocol includes the list of analyses, award criteria, special instructions, an example of the data entry portal, the current calendar with dates for sample shipping, dates for access to the data entry portal, reporting due dates, and report publication.
    • Protocols are available within the data portal.
  • Confidential Data Submission
    • Confidential access to the data portal where participants log in and submit results.
    • Participants can also access their historical reports.
  • Reporting
    • Reports are published according to the Series Schedule found in each Protocol.
    • Reports contain results of all participating labs as well as summary statistics including consensus values, standard deviation, z-scores, and Kernel Density plots.
    • Reports are prepared using ISO 13528 robust statistics.

Available Series

We offer various samples to meet diverse laboratory needs. The Series include a Flour Analysis Series, Label Analysis Series, Rheology Testing Series, and a Food Safety Series. A description of the samples offered within each of these Series can be found below.

Sample fees vary depending upon the nature of the analytical procedures involved, the frequency, and the subscribers' location. See order form for current pricing. Shipping rates are calculated on a per-shipment basis and will vary depending on your location and the total number of shipments you will receive. Shipping will be combined wherever possible.

Become a Subscriber or Renew

  • Flour Analysis Series
    Check Sample Code​ Sample Type Frequency Analyses
    Hard Wheat Flour SampleMonthlyMoisture, Ash, Protein, Falling Number, Wet Gluten, Dry Gluten, Gluten Index
    Hard Wheat Flour SampleBiMonthlyMoisture, Ash, Protein, Falling Number, Diastatic Power
    SW1Soft Wheat Flour SampleBiMonthlyMoisture, Ash, Protein, Falling Number, pH
    Durum Semolina SampleBiMonthlyMoisture, Ash,​ Protein, Falling Number, Speck Count, Screen Test, Minolta Color
  • Label Analysis Series
    Check Sample Code Sample Type Frequency Analyses
    Food for Fat Analysis
    BiMonthlyMoisture, Total Crude Fat (EE), Total Crude Fat (AH), Saturated Fat, Monounsaturated Fatty Acids, Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids, Total Fat (Calculation), Cholesterol
    SUGARGrain-Based Food for Sugar AnalysisMonthlyMoisture, Fructose, Glucose, Sucrose, ​Maltose, Lactose
    Grain-Based Food or Pet Food for Analysis of Proximates, Vitamins and MineralsBiMonthly
    Moisture, Ash, Protein, Crude Fat (EE), Crude Fat (AH)
    Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B1​​​2, Vitamin E, Folic Acid, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin
    Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, Copper, Potassium, Phosphorus, Manganese, Sodium, Selenium, Chromium
    DFGrain-Based Food for Dietary Fiber AnalysisBiMonthlyMoisture, Soluble Dietary Fiber, Insoluble Dietary Fiber, Total Dietary Fiber, Beta-Glucan
    GFGrain-Based Food Sample to measure Gluten ContentBiMonthly​
    Gluten (Gluten-Free Label)
    FEEDGrain-Based Feed or Pet Food SampleBiMonthlyMoisture, Protein, Ash, Crude Fat (EE), Crude Fat (AH)
  • Food Safety Series
    Check Sample Code Sample Type Frequency Analyses
    MICRO1Flour Sample for Microbiological AnalysesQuarterlySalmonella, Staphylococcus, Yeasts, Molds, Aerobic Plate Count, Coliforms, E.Coli
    MYCOGround Whole Grain for Mycotoxin AnalysisQuarterlyAflatoxin, Fumonisin, DON/Vomitoxin, Zearalenone
    Flour Sample for Extraneous MaterialQuarterlyExtraneous Material Analysis with Review by Expert Authority
  • Rheology Testing Series
    Check Sample Code Sample Type Frequency​ Analyses
    ALVFlour Sample for AlveographBiMonthlyAlveograph Analysis
    Flour Sample for AmylographBiMonthlyAmylograph Analysis
    Flour Sample for Farinograph (Small Bowl)BiMonthlyFarinograph Analysis, Valorimeter
    FARLFlour Sample for Farinograph (Large Bowl)BiMonthlyFarinograph Analysis, Valorimeter​
    MIXOGround Whole Grain for MixographBiMonthlyMoisture, Mixograph Absorption, Water Temp., Time to Peak Height, Height of Curve at Peak & 8 Min, Descending Slope
    RVAFlour or Starch-Blend Sample for RVA AnalysisBiMonthlyMoisture, Stirring Number, 13-Min Pasting​

Proficiency Ratings

Proficiency Reports are available in all Series subscriptions except for EXTRA. In addition to comparing results with other laboratories, you will receive quantitative estimates of laboratory accuracy via the reports. Annual certificates are issued to laboratories that demonstrate excellent performance during the year.

How Proficiency Ratings Work

Our Proficiency Rating utilizes the internationally recognized z-score in determining accuracy assessments. Results from each Series subscription are compiled and distributed to all subscribers, maintaining participant confidentiality. All subscribers are eligible and automatically considered when they submit results for all rounds in all Program Series.

When you subscribe to the Laboratory Proficiency Rating Program, you will receive z-value reports at regular intervals throughout the year to enable you to check on your progress. Accuracy Scores will be calculated for subscribers who have submitted data in all rounds for all analytes across the calendar year.

Laboratories who have submitted for all rounds in a calendar year can earn award certificates depending on the level of their accuracy.

  • Laboratories who obtain an adjusted mean z-score of less than 2.00 earn a proficiency rating of satisfactory for accuracy
  • Laboratories who obtain an adjusted mean z-score of less than 1.00 earn a proficiency rating of outstanding for accuracy

The z-score represents the number of standard deviations a single result, or series of results, differs from the true value as represented by the respective mean. Outliers are removed from the series of results when determining the z-score (and attract a penalty). Laboratory accuracy is determined by the deviation of observed analytical results from the grand mean of all participating laboratories.

Certificates and Awards

All analyses reported by the subscriber will be included in the Proficiency Rating Program Certificate Status Calculations. Results must be reported for each round of the program from January to December of the certificate year. Refer to the current Series Protocol for the required analytes and Group 1 or Group 2 details.

Participation certificates will be available upon request for current subscribers. Results for all rounds of the specified group of analytes must be reported. Details on qualifications are outlined in the latest version of the Series Protocol.