Keep yourself up to date with new developments and ideas from all the staff here at The International Centre for Nutritional Excellence. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

False Advertising & Label Claims in the Dietary Supplement Industry

Nutritional Products International (NPI) has written an article on false advertising and label claims within the dietary supplement industry.

According to this recent article, the dietary supplement industry is growing at a rate of 7-10% per year in the US. With this growth, the number of different dietary supplements available on the market also continues to increase. As consumers continue to purchase supplements in order to help solve a variety of health issues and to improve general health, it is more important than ever that any claims being made are accurate.

In the US, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulate any health claims being made. Any false advertisement or inaccurate label claims being made for dietary supplements are picked up by these authorities. Any company found to in breach of applicable regulations can face consequences of a class action lawsuit and even fines. Read the full article here.

In the UK, food supplements are regulated under the food law, which falls under the Food Safety Act of 1990. The Health and Food Supplements Information Service (HSIS) provide really useful information on the regulation of food supplements (see the link here).

The general advice is to contact your local authority and specialists to ensure that any advertising or label claims meet all relevant regulations. As well as this, laboratory testing of your product will help you ensure that what is written on the label is actually present within the product. Laboratory testing can also ensure that any prohibited or undesirable ingredients are not present.

The ultimate goal is to ensure that the safety and the quality of your products are of the highest standard. Introducing various analytical techniques can be a useful part of your quality control regime to help reach this goal.

If you need your label claims on your dietary supplement or nutraceuticals confirmed via laboratory analysis then contact us today.

ICNE Ltd Business Ownership Transfer

The International Centre For Nutritional Excellence (ICNE) Ltd. business transfer to Tangerine Holdings.

From 11th August 2017, ICNE Ltd. (company number 6377561) legally transferred business ownership into the Tangerine Holdings.

Tangerine Holdings is a group of companies in Lytham, Lancashire and the name behind VetPlus, Carr & Day & Martin, Agri-Lloyd and other well-known brands. It has a clear aim to be the recognised market leader in each sector of their business by providing super premium products and outstanding service.

Tangerine Holdings have made the acquisition of ICNE Ltd to further strengthen and develop the capabilities of ICNE as a testing facility within the raw material and nutraceutical industry.

The transfer of business will have no effect on our accounts, customer relations or quality management system. There will be no impact to our VMD GMP or UKAS ISO17025 accreditation and will continually work as we always do to ensure the highest quality of laboratory work to all our customers. Your point of contact, process of sample submission and all testing services will remain the same.

If you have any queries then please contact us on 01253 737 00 or

Pam Mitchell
(Head of Quality for Tangerine Holdings)

Importance of QC Testing in the Herbal and Botanicals Industry.

A recent article in Nutraceuticals World, ‘Reviewing the state of the Herbs & Botanicals Market’, by Danielle Rose, focuses on topics such as understanding the market, new trends, challenges and quality control issues. In particular, this article looks into adulteration of raw materials and finished products in these markets and ways in which this can be controlled.

Raw materials testingThe dietary supplement industry regulations can vary from one country to the next. The lack of strict regulations could potentially lead to adulteration or mislabelling of products. As there is not one defined set of regulations to ensure harmony between different countries, self regulation is very important for quality control.

Due to competition in these markets being high, companies want to gain business by reducing the cost of their products whilst also increasing profit margins. This can sometimes lead companies to purchase the cheapest raw materials, which may be adulterated or ‘cut’ with other much cheaper materials. In many cases, the purchasers of the raw materials may not be aware that the purity of the raw materials may be compromised.

Testing is necessary to confirm to the industry and the consumer that you are, in fact, selling what you say you are’.

QC Testing The article encourages increased quality control measures with the aid of product testing. In being able to clearly state what you are selling, and by backing this up with the correct laboratory analysis, you will give consumers the confidence to trust your products and company and therefore win their business. In order to give complete and accurate information on the raw material, various types of analysis may need to be performed. It may be necessary to identify the product initially using ID tests such as Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), optical rotation, Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) etc. This could be coupled with a purity test for the active component using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), titrations etc, whilst running the sample alongside a certified reference standard for traceability, and a placebo or blank (sample containing no analyte of interest) to prove the method has no interference from other components.

It is always good practice to have a flexible risk based approach on a testing regime for each raw material or finished product. Part of this testing regime can be to set up product specific specifications, which would include results that you should be expecting from the analysis of the raw material.

As well as being an excellent review of the herbs and botanicals market, this article strongly encourages laboratory testing in order to ensure the safety and quality of any raw material being purchased. If you require any raw material or finished product testing for your quality control procedures, then contact ICNE on 01253 737 009 or email us at

To see the full Nutraceuticals World article, click here

UKAS ISO17025 Annual Inspection Results 2016

Earlier this week, the ICNE team underwent the annual surveillance visit to assess continued compliance against the ISO17025:2005 standard which is conducted by UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service).

We are very pleased to announce that we have been recommended for continued accreditation, with only a single minor observation noted.

We are extremely pleased with this result and proud of the whole team here at ICNE for their continued dedication and hard work. It is great to see that our extremely high level of quality and technical management and commitment to continuous improvements are being recognised in such a positive way.

To see our UKAS certificate and schedule of accreditation, visit the ICNE quality page here.


Review of “Choosing the Right Analytical Lab” Article

Nutraceuticals World have published an article on ‘Choosing the Right Analytical Lab’ in their July/August publication.

The article, written by Maged Sharaf, PhD (Chief Science Officer, AHPA), highlights the importance of selecting the correct lab and how this decision can help manufacturers make sure products are of a high quality, therefore ensuring compliance to cGMP. Selecting the right analytical lab will help companies make sure that products and raw materials meet specifications in identity, purity, strength and composition. As well as this, it can help with purchasing, labelling and making claims.

Questions manufacturers should ask a lab…

The article posed 14 questions that a manufacturer should ask a lab before agreeing to work with them. We will be answering all these questions in the coming weeks, to show how ICNE meets all these requirements. The article is very informative, as it gives clear and concise advice on what manufacturers should be looking out for when selecting the most appropriate lab as a partner.

ICNE has ISO17025 and VMD GMP accreditation and can help with all your testing required for GMP. Contact us for more information on how we can help with GMP testing requirements

Read the full article here

 Keep an eye out for our answers to all these questions!

ICNE Newsletter Launch

We have launched our 1st newsletter!

The newsletter covers the results from our customer satisfaction survey, the joint supplement study published in Nutraceuticals Now, and our review of the BRC standard for Agents and Brokers. Please click here to view the newsletter. To sign up to our newsletter, enter your email address at the bottom of this page.

For any further enquiries about our range of analytical laboratory services, then contact us on 01253 737 009, or

Review of the BRC Global Standard for Agents and Brokers

Are you an Agent or Broker within the food and food packaging industry, seeking to increase the quality of your business tractability? Or is your company working in compliance with the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety and want to make compliance with Issue 7 easier?

For many years there has been call for the global standardisation of businesses in the food and/or food packaging industries which buy, sell or facilitate the trade of products.  These include retailers, food service companies and manufacturers.  An industry without global standardisation is open to potential sources of error which can directly impact the business and/or the consumer.

In January 2014, The BRC released a new Global Standard for Agents and Brokers Issue 1. This was designed to provide a full Quality Management System (QMS) framework to increase confidence in the safety, quality and operational criteria required to ensure legal compliance and protection of the consumer.  A key feature of this Standard is the importance of product testing using an ISO17025:2005 accredited laboratory.  This will provide companies with documented evidence that their products are meeting the requirements of their consumers; potentially giving them a leading edge on the market. Our review on the requirements of this Standard can be read here.

We at ICNE are a GMP and ISO17025:2005 accredited laboratory and are ideally placed to assist you with the testing plan requirements of this Standard. Please contact us to discuss your specific testing requirements.

ICNE VMD GMP Inspection Results

Here at ICNE, we are proud to announce that following our routine inspection on the 7th of October 2015, we have just received confirmation that we have been granted a GMP Compliance rating of Good (indicating no major findings were issued).

We are extremely proud of this rating and are pleased to see our continued diligence and focus on quality along with providing a high level of customer service has been recognised.

If you require a copy of our updated GMP Certificate for your records then please visit the ICNE Quality page

ICNE’s Overview of BRC Standard for Agents and Brokers Testing Requirements

Are you an agent or broker who are considering the BRC accreditation specific for Agents and Brokers?

Here at ICNE, as an ISO17025:2005 accredited laboratory we have produced an overview of the testing requirements of this BRC standard which may assist you in this process.

Click here to read our overview.

News Categories

Latest Studies

Vitamin C Effervescent Tablet Study

20 June, 2017Posted by: ICNE

Our vitamin C effervescent tablet study shows that all the...

Read More

Companion Animal Joint Supplement Study

21 September, 2015Posted by: ICNE

Our Companion Animal Joint Supplement Study shows that all of the...

Read More