Eyjafjallajokull volcano: Business Continuity

With regard to the possible on-going situation concerning the restriction of flights from the United Kingdom and other European Countries caused by the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull volcano in Iceland.


It has become evident that there may well be delays in sourcing both USP and certain EP reference standards intermittently over the next few months.  This highlights the importance to laboratories of having plans in place that enable them to carry on day-to-day testing.


Given the Butterworth policy of single usage of Certified Reference Standards and ordering of such materials on the acceptance of quotations the following options have been formulated to allow analyses to be continued.


  1. Analysis that requires the use of USP or EP Certified Reference Standards will only be carried out when any such material has been obtained. The analysis will then be carried out at the earliest opportunity. Any tests not requiring the use of reference standards will be performed and reported in the normal manner.
  2. Appropriate reference materials may be provided by the client.
  3. Instruction has been received from the client that the use of EP CRS’s may be used in place of USP CRS’s, if these are available.
  4. Where previously employed Certified Reference Standards have been retained and are available within the laboratory these will be used to complete relevant analysis. These materials will be of the current batch supplied by the pharmacopeia and will have been stored under appropriate monitored conditions.
  5. If available, materials labelled as USP or EP equivalent will be sourced and used as secondary reference standards.


Given the five options that are available we will require written guidance, either by letter, fax or e-mail, on how you wish to proceed.  Alternatively if it is possible to provide earlier notice of the need for testing of samples where Certified Reference Standards are required, then this may enable us to build up stock of the relevant materials.


If you would like to discuss this matter in more detail please contact one of the following:


John Welch - Head of Business Development

David Hawkins – Head of QA and IT                           

David Riches – Head of Analytical Operations


We are also aware that there may be issues with the sending of reports to clients not based in the UK therefore; we will be sending a fax or scanned copy of the signed report on completion of the work.  


As expected we will continue to everything possible to ensure that reference materials are obtained at the earliest opportunity, to cause as little disruption as possible to our ability to deliver results in a timely and reliable manner.

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