- Certification Policies
- Complaints and Requests for Investigations
- 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:
- Application and information submission
- Product evaluation
- Product testing in lab
- Manufacturing facility inspection, production confirmation and product sampling
- Test results review and acceptance
- Contract signed and products listed
- Annual plant inspection and retesting
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 email@example.com) 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.
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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What do the letters "NSF" stand for?
The letters in our organization’s name do not actually stand for any specific words today. They were derived from our founding name dating back to the 1940s, which was the National Sanitation Foundation. Our name was changed to NSF International in the early 1990s when the National Sanitation Foundation and NSF Testing Labs were merged.
How can I obtain current NSF Listings of certified products?
Specific listings of any NSF-certified product are free to anyone visiting our website. These listings are updated daily.
How can I get on the mailing list for NSF publications?
By completing the application form and mailing or faxing it to NSF International, Attn: Marketing, 789 Dixboro Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48105.
Who do I contact with questions regarding specific NSF or NSF/ANSI Standards (not certified products)?
Send letter or email to Jessica Evans (firstname.lastname@example.org), Director of Standards. Please enclose all pertinent information regarding the issue and the affected standard.
How can I get an NSF employee to do a presentation about a specific NSF program or service?
Contact Stan Hazan, Senior Director, Regulatory Affairs and Association Programs, at 800-NSF-MARK (800-673-6275) or email@example.com.
How do I file a complaint about a product?
To file a complaint, please complete the online complaint / investigation form. Hard copies of the form may be obtained by contacting Stan Hazan, Senior Director, Regulatory Affairs and Association Programs, at 800-NSF-MARK (800-673-6275) or firstname.lastname@example.org. When completing a complaint form, please be sure to include all relevant information, e.g., source and location of the complaint, specific details, product description, model number and/or serial and location of complaint, specific details, product description, model number and/or serial number, evidence of NSF mark misuse, etc.
What does NSF do with a complaint about certified products?
Upon receipt of a complaint form, a copy is forwarded to the appropriate service representative for validation. Validation should occur through an investigation at the site within two weeks. If the complaint is found valid, the subject company of the investigation is informed. If found invalid, the complaint file is closed and placed in the official NSF corporate file. If a complaint is valid, the manufacturer is instructed to produce corrective action to regain conformity to the standard.
What is a public notice?
A public notice is a process by which NSF informs the public, industry, and regulatory communities of a non-conformance of public health significance found in a listed product that is not corrected. These notices are generally performed through the use of publications, press releases, and website notification.
- Open How do I propose a change to a standard?