SGS’s BioVision laboratory in Canada has received International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) accreditation to provide sampling and testing for a large variety of commercially important seeds.


ISTA was founded in 1924 with the aim of developing and publishing standardized procedures for seed testing. Today, with more than 130 accredited laboratories around the world, its mission is to promote international trade by bringing uniformity to seed quality evaluation.

The laboratory at Sherwood Park, Alberta, joins SGS's existing ISTA accredited laboratory at Brookings in South Dakota, USA, to create a network that conveniently and effectively support both the local and international seed industry. SGS in Canada has achieved this recognition in addition to its other Canadian seed testing accreditations.

ISTA accreditation at Sherwood Park covers seed sampling and testing for the generation of ISTA Orange International Seed Lot Certificates (OIC) and Blue International Seed Sample Certificates (BIC). An OIC provides information on the quality of seed lots, while a BIC provides information on a seed sample. Our laboratory covers a comprehensive range of ISTA testing services, including purity testing, determination of other seeds, germination, viability, and moisture content, and seed weight determination for seeds, coated seeds and seed mixtures.

Our scope of ISTA accreditation includes sampling and testing of:

  • Grasses
  • Cereals
  • Legumes
  • Pulses
  • Vegetables
  • Flowers
  • Other agricultural crops, e.g. Brassica species

Acquired by SGS in 2017, BioVision has over 20 years of expertise in testing for the seed trade and research organizations. Utilizing three laboratories in western Canada, the team specialize in testing seeds for purity, germination, viability, seed health, disease, and molecular and trait testing to Canadian and AOSA standards.

For more information, please contact:

Terry McIntee
Laboratory Manager, SGS Canada
t: +1 780 436 8822

SGS Solution

SGS supports the international trade in seeds through its ISTA approved facilities in Canada and the United States, as well as its ISTA-authorized samplers, allowing us to draw samples for testing wherever a client's seed shipment happens to be.

In addition to a global network of agricultural testing laboratories, we also offer training to help our clients in Canada and the US conform to international requirements for seed quality.

About SGS

SGS is the world's leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 97,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 2,600 offices and laboratories around the world.