Informed-Choice is a quality assurance program for sports nutrition products, suppliers to the sports nutrition industry and supplement manufacturing facilities. The program certifies that all nutritional supplements and/or ingredients that bear the Informed-Choice logo have been tested for banned substances by the world class sports anti-doping lab, LGC (formerly HFL Sport Science).
LGC is a world-renowned sports doping control and research laboratory, with over 50 years of expertise in anti-doping in sport. LGC has published over 300 scientific papers on methods for detection of trace levels of substances that are prohibited in sport and has over 450 man-years of research into doping control. LGC has been testing supplements and ingredients on behalf of reputable manufacturers and suppliers for over 10 years.
It has tested over 35,000 samples during this time, and has also carried out a number of research studies to explore the prevalence of contamination with prohibited substances in products and ingredients. LGC’s research into supplements and contamination also includes several administration studies to investigate the levels of prohibited substances that could cause an athlete to fail a doping test. These have been published in peer reviewed scientific journals.
Although LGC has been testing supplements since 2002, it became clear that there was a need for a comprehensive certification program which not only tested products for banned substances, but that also ensured that products were manufactured in accordance with good manufacturing practices. That’s where Informed-Choice comes in.
When you see the Informed-Choice logo, you know the following:
- It is a certification program for sports supplements, ingredients and manufacturing facilities which assures athletes that products have been regularly tested for substances considered prohibited in sport.
- Products have been manufactured to high-quality standards.
- Responsible supplement companies have made Informed-Choice part of their existing quality assurance systems to ensure their products are safer for athletes to use.
- The Informed-Choice programs aims to work closely with supplement manufacturers and suppliers by reviewing the quality systems they have in place at the manufacturing facility and by providing high-quality analytical testing for products/ingredients to minimize the incidence of banned contaminants finding their way into sport. (Research has shown that some supplement products have been found to be contaminated with low levels of substances that are prohibited by WADA, the World Anti-Doping Agency, and other sporting bodies. Informed-Choice seeks to avoid that kind of contamination.)
- Informed-Choice aims to provide athletes with an effective risk management service so that they can choose products that have undergone additional quality control testing as required by elite sport.