Development of Testing Capacity to Support Fish Exports in Solomon Islands (stage 2)
Whole and processed tuna is the second largest export industry in SI. This project (the second stage of SOLS12) examines what investment is needed to build the capacity of the SI National Public Health Laboratory to achieve ISO 17025 accreditation within three years, and therefore able to carry out food safety testing for continued market access. As well as fixing problems of water and electricity supply and purchasing more equipment, investment is needed to boost staffing levels and improve skills in lab techniques. Methodologies contained in the laboratory’s Quality Manual, as well as recordkeeping and procurement procedures, need to be reviewed and updated. The estimated cost to build required capacity to achieve accreditation is AUD$240K. To remain economically viable the lab needs to review its fee structure and attract more commercial customers. It will also need financial support from the SI government.
Key words: ISO 17025, chemical testing, microbiological testing, Cawthron Institute, tuna, quality assurance, food safety testing, water testing, Soltuna.