CSITC Round Trial 3, 2016
The Task Force on CSIC, the Commercial Standardization of Instrument Testing of Cotton (CSITC) with its cooperation between the Bremen Fibre Institute (FIBRE) and the USDA-AMS, headed by the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) has completed the Round Trial 3 with better results than ever before
This is again confirming the continuous trend towards better evaluations during the last years of the CSITC Round Trials. It means that the variation of test results between the instruments is this time, and for the complete year 2016, 30% lower than it typically was in the years from 2007 to 2011. And also that all participating laboratories are benefitting from their participation in the CSITC Round Trials and improving their performance
One hundred six (106) testing facilities within more than 30 countries participating with their cotton classification instruments in this Round Trial are located in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North and South America.
Four times a year, four samples are sent to each participant laboratory, which are tested on their instruments. Based on the Accuracy for Micronaire, Strength, Length, Length Uniformity, Reflectance (Rd) and Yellowness (+b), an Overall Evaluation Grade is given for each instrument, which confirms the participants’ ability to provide reproducible test results that are based on the established international standards. All single test results for each cotton property (1,200 results per instrument) are analysed for accuracy and precision for each instrument.
Laboratories do directly benefit from their participation in the Round Trial and reduce their result deviations by receiving detailed diagnostic feedback, and the cotton community is benefitting from this with a reduced interlaboratory test result variation. It is easier to fix contracts and to assure that the delivered cotton shows the properties that were demanded. Claims can be reduced. Participation is a recommended practice for fulfilling quality management requirements in laboratories (e.g. ISO 17025).
Evaluaton of trash parameters now included
In March 2016, the CSITC Task Force decided to take the next step for harmonizing the Trash Parameters (Trash Count and Trash Area). With an additional Evaluation Grade for Trash, each laboratory can now see easily, if its Trash results are close to the average of all instruments, or if an untypically high deviation is given. Trash Evaluation Grades are not included in the Overall Evaluation Grade because Trash measurement is still quite variable in its results, and the CSITC Task Force does currently not want to reduce the significance of the Overall Evaluation Grade by including the Trash Evaluation Grade.