About us

We resolve scientific disputes mainly in the food and feed sectors, give advice to regulators and industry, and carry out research.

We have a statutory function as a referee analyst under several acts of Parliament which focus on public protection, value for money and consumer choice. Regulatory areas where our advice may be important include the quality of food, animal feed, pesticides, medicines and chemicals.

Who we are

We are a scientific team based in Teddington. Our areas of expertise include molecular biology, chemical and biological metrology, and food science. The team includes a scientist with the required statutory qualification (MChemA) to act as referee analyst.

Our responsibilities

We are responsible for:

  • helping to settle technical disputes between food businesses and local authorities
  • carrying out research to give evidence-based advice
  • advising government and industry
  • sharing our findings with industry, academics and other organisations

Our priorities

From 2017 to 2020, our priorities will be to increase:

  • the effectiveness of our referee function by continuing to develop our capabilities in preparation for future challenges

  • our understanding of the accuracy and application of ‘point of use’ technologies to address the emerging concept of ‘the consumer as analyst’ and the use of rapid measurements generated outside a controlled laboratory environment

  • our engagement with stakeholders in response to a call for Government Chemist scientists to provide expert opinion and to lead or contribute to committees.

Our governance

The Government Chemist Programme Expert Group (GCPEG) plays a key role in the governance of the GC programme by providing the necessary independent scrutiny


Government Chemist staff sit on a number of important committees where they seek to input into and influence the development of new legislation, standards and policy to ensure that they are based on sound measurement science and are fit-for-purpose.

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