EU Reference Laboratories (EURLs) aim to ensure high-quality, uniform testing in the EU and support Commission activities on risk management and risk assessment in the area of laboratory analysis.
Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 on official controls defines tasks, duties and requirements for all the EURLs, a list of which is provided in its Annex VII. The Commission can establish new EURLs or change designation of existing ones.
Reference Laboratories are tasked to:
- provide National Reference Laboratories (NRLs) with analytical methods and diagnostic technics, and coordinate their application
- train staff from National Reference Laboratories
- provide the Commission with scientific and technical expertise in relation to laboratory analysis (e.g. assist actively in the diagnosis of animal disease outbreaks)
- collaborate with the competent laboratories in non-EU countries
- The legislation concerning the designation and tasks of the European Union Reference Laboratories and the European Union Reference Centres is Regulation (EU) No 2017/625 starting 29 April 2018.