NSF Certification

  • Overview
  • Certification Policies
  • Complaints and Requests for Investigations
  • Accreditations
  • The Regulator’s Role in Certification

Third-party certification provides information to stakeholders that allows them to determine compliance to regulatory and purchase specifications, to apply risk management principles and to determine general suitability of products, systems and processes.

NSF accredited third-party certification provides all stakeholders – industry, regulators, users and the general public – assurance that a certified product, material, component or service complies with the technical requirements of the referenced standard.

The NSF certification process is specific to the product, process or service being certified and the type of certification, but generally follows seven steps:

  1. Application and information submission
  2. Product evaluation
  3. Product testing in lab
  4. Manufacturing facility inspection, production confirmation and product sampling
  5. Test results review and acceptance
  6. Contract signed and products listed
  7. Annual plant inspection and retesting

Certification Policies

All certification programs are governed by certification policies that are referenced in the contract. The policies provide an overview of the rights and responsibilities of both the certifier and the manufacturer. The policies provide clear rules on the use of the NSF mark on products, labels and advertising, and prohibit misrepresentations. The policies also provide for product recalls by NSF and public notice when a certified product is thought to present a public health concern. Additionally, due process is afforded in the event of appeals to administrative hearings.

This contract legally binds NSF and the company and confers rights and responsibilities to each, including authorized use of the NSF mark. The contract is the basis for certification.

Complaints and Requests for Investigations

It may be unclear whether a specific product or installation is indeed certified. We encourage regulators to contact the NSF Regulatory Hotline (+1 800.673.6275, ext. 5105 or regulatory@nsf.org) to check the status of a product. Alternatively, regulators can file a complaint/request for investigation. We will conduct a thorough investigation of the manufacturer's claim, and report back to the regulator.

Accreditations

NSF certification programs are accredited to multiple international standards by national and international accreditation bodies, including ANSI and ANAB. For more information and a complete list of accreditations, see NSF Accreditations.

The Regulator’s Role in Certification

Regulatory bodies have worked with and built confidence in NSF International. Regulators can strengthen regulatory programs by recognizing accredited certifications, or other certifications, such as “NSF or equivalent”, ensuring that other certifications are deemed equivalent to those of NSF. NSF listings are updated daily and are the only way to ensure that a specific manufacturer and/or model is currently NSF certified.

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