MOCON’s testing lab partner in Mumbai, Hemetek Techno Instruments, has been accredited by India’s National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) under the ISO/IEC 17025:2005 standard for oxygen and water vapor permeation testing of plastic barrier materials.

The Indian government has authorized NABL as the accreditation body for testing and calibration laboratories. The organization operates as an autonomous body under the government’s Ministry of Science and Technology. The rigorous accreditation process takes a minimum of three years to complete.

The standard specifies the general requirements to competently carry out tests and/or calibrations, including sampling. It covers testing and calibration performed using standard methods, non-standard methods and laboratory-developed methods.

“It is a significant achievement for a private laboratory to receive this accreditation. Typically, the accreditation process is not economically viable for a non-government-owned facility due to the significant investment in technical staff, instruments and the process,” explains Viraj Devasthale, director, Hemetek.

The accreditation gives those in need of package testing one of the first non-government-owned permeation lab alternatives in India. Traditionally, Indian companies have relied on universities and other institutions for their package testing needs. Turnaround times typically have ranged from a couple of weeks to more than a month.

“We believe we can provide accurate results faster, helping companies decrease development time and improve speed-to-market,” Devasthale says.

Hemetek offers barrier and headspace analysis, leak detection and burst testing for food, beverage and pharmaceutical / medical packaging. The water vapor, oxygen and carbon dioxide permeation testing services are also intended for manufacturers and converters of rigid and flexible packaging containers and films.

The new Mumbai lab will also target multinational brand owners who want to make sure that the testing standards they have established in other parts of the world can be repeated in India.