In 2001, GIPSA established a biotechnology reference laboratory at its Technical Center in Kansas City, Missouri. Working with grain handlers, test manufacturers, and life science organizations, GIPSA is facilitating the marketing of U.S. grains and oilseeds by ensuring the availability of reliable tests.
Under this program, GIPSA evaluates the performance of rapid tests developed to detect biotechnology-derived grains and oilseeds, and confirms the tests operate in accordance with manufacturers' claims. This program was initially used to evaluate rapid tests developed to detect the presence of the Cry9C protein produced in StarLink(TM) corn.
On February 7, 2002, the USDA's Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) began offering a Proficiency Program to organizations testing for biotechnology-derived grains and oilseeds. This program will help these organizations identify areas of concern and take corrective actions to improve testing capability and reliability. Through this program, USDA seeks to improve the overall performance of testing for biotechnology-derived grains and oilseeds in the United States.
Participation in this program is voluntary and available to organizations testing for the presence of biotechnology events in grains and oilseeds.
Participants will receive 9 samples, 6 corn samples and 3 soybean samples on a bi-annual basis.
The corn samples may contain any combination of the following events: Bt11, CBH351, E176, GA21, MON810, NK603 and T25, Herculex and Mon863.
The soybean samples will be either positive or negative for the presence of the CP4 EPSPS soybean event.
The program will be expanded to include new events as they are commercialized.
Each participant will receive a summary report and a confidential code to identify their organization.
The Proficiency Studies summary reports will be posted on GIPSA's Biotechnology web site.
Participants in the GIPSA Proficiency Program must provide the following information to the GIPSA Biotechnology Program Manager listed below. This communication can be by letter or e-mail:
Organization name and address.
Participant contact person.
Contact telephone number.
Contact fax number.
Contact e-mail address.
For more information on this program or to participate contact Paul Wacker at 816-891-0452, or by e-mail at
Recognizing that sampling is the single largest source of error in the analysis of grains, GIPSA developed and offered sampling guidelines to the grain-handling industry.