To ensure availability and broaden public access to testing and calibration services, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) on Tuesday, June 29, officially welcomed Nestlé Philippines, Inc. in its “OneLab Network.”
DOST said that through the Nestlé Quality Assurance Center (NQAC) in Cabuyao, the company is joining the DOST “OneLab Program” which is the country’s network of laboratories aiming to ensure availability and broaden public access to testing and calibration services.
The NQAC Cabuyao is the first laboratory of a multinational food and beverage company to become part of OneLab’s roster of analytical testing laboratories.
“A primary goal of the DOST OneLab is to provide Filipinos with access to an internationally recognized network of engaged, competent and proficient laboratories,” said DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña.
“Having Nestlé with its NQAC laboratory as a partner adds to the global competitiveness of OneLab and further expands its scope of testing services for start-up businesses in the country,” he added.
DOST said that the NQAC Cabuyao will coordinate with DOST, exchanging knowledge, expertise, resources, and capabilities, so that Filipino micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) will have easy and affordable access to world-class chemical and microbiological analytical testing.
The NQAC, DOST said, will also have the opportunity to support the analytical requirements of DOST-driven innovation projects.
“In unlocking the power of food to enhance quality of life for everyone, today and for generations to come, we look forward to closer cooperation with the DOST through OneLab, and together champion food safety and quality,” said said Nestlé Philippines Chairman and CEO Kais Marzouki.
The DOST OneLab was created in response to the need for a simplified system to serve the testing and calibration requirements of research institutions, the government and non-government sectors, and the general public, particularly MSMEs.
To date, start-up food businesses are easily able to avail of the required testing and calibration procedures needed for product registration, regulatory compliance, certification of product quality and safety, and performance efficiency or quality monitoring.
“Nestlé invests heavily in state-of-the-art facilities that ensure the uncompromised quality of our products. It is one of the key reasons why consumers have full confidence in our products,” said Dr. Philippe Gallardo, Zone Head of Nestlé Testing Centers.
“Filipino MSMEs can now access our analytical expertise in food testing as a member of the DOST OneLab Network,” he added.
Currently, the DOST OneLab has 16 DOST Regional Standard and Testing Laboratories (RSTL), 7 DOST Research and Development Institutes (RDI), 4 government agencies, 21 private local laboratories, and 8 international laboratories as members.
Envisioned as a one-stop-shop for laboratory services, the DOST OneLab integrates the laboratories within the DOST system and partner laboratories from the other government agencies and the private sector at a single touchpoint through an IT-based platform.
This arrangement seeks to ease public access to the testing services of all DOST laboratories and other DOST OneLab member laboratories by offering standardized services and fees nationwide.
Services include chemical, physical, microbiological, radiological testing of water, waste water, food, wood, furniture, textile, paper, metals, and electronic products. Calibration services are also made available to meet the metrological traceability of testing laboratories and the various industries.
In enabling timely and accurate testing and calibration results, a referral system is employed to ensure that a sample is sent to the best laboratory that can process the required test and is within closest proximity to the customer.
The DOST OneLab promises the fastest turn-around time and the widest range of test offerings available in the market, with processes that are at par with international standards, compliant with good governance requirements, and backed by a robust and secure IT system.