NRL for Milk and Dairy Products


The scope of the NRL milk and milk products (NRL-MMP) includes the analyses total plate count and somatic cell count in raw milk and the determination of alkaline phosphatase activity on heat treated milk and milk products. The first two parameters are part of the quality determination of raw milk delivered by the producer to the purchaser (dairy industry). The alkaline phosphatase activity can the used as parameter to control the proper heat treatment of milk during pasteurization and the use of pasteurized milk in milk products.


ILVO has been officially nominated by the FASFC as NRL-MMP. This NRL was established as a consortium between ILVO and the Centre Wallon de Recherches Agronomiques – Département Valorisation des productions agricoles (CRA-W-DVP) from Gembloux. ILVO coordinates the NRL-MMP.

The tasks of the NRL are as follows:

  • Staying informed and keeping the technical competence in the working area at the highest possible level
  • Working within a context of accreditation for the laboratory analyses
  • Participation in international inter-laboratory tests for demonstrating the technical competence of the NRL
  • Technical and scientific advice to the FASFA
  • Technical and scientific advice to the by the FASFC-approved laboratories
  • Development and organisation of scientific and technical training for the FASFC-laboratories and by the FASFC-approved laboratories
  • Keeping in contact with the European Reference Laboratory (EU-RL) Milk and Milk products and with other EU-RLs active in the scoop of the NRL-MMP
  • Evaluation, validation and accreditation of new analytical methods and the development of new methods
  • Organisation of the Steering Committee and communication group meetings for and with the FASFC, the by the FASFC approved laboratories and laboratories which qualify for recognition
  • Organisation of proficiency tests at national level; i.e. for the laboratories of the FASFC, the by the FASFC approved laboratories and laboratories which qualify for recognition, with the aim to harmonise the methods and the results in the national network of laboratories
  • Play an active role in crises and incidents by technical and scientific services and advice to the FASFC


Koen De Reu