RAL quality mark
The RAL Quality Assurance for Substrates for Plants is a reputable quality mark underlining the integrity and sense of responsibility of companies trading in soils, substrates and mulches. These companies are required to undergo extensive neutral inspections before they are allowed to use the RAL quality mark. The quality mark identifies a product as complying with defined quality standards, the Quality and Testing Regulations, and as being under inspection of independent supervisors. It is a milestone for user safety and consumer trust in the product.
Why RAL Quality Assurance?
The quality and uniformity of substrates have to meet the high requirements of state-of-the-art crop management in horticulture and construction work in landscape gardening. The quality assurance programmes for substrates and their constituents, as well as bark products, defined key quality parameters and requirements as well as methods of identifying them. These parameters and requirements are specified in the Quality and Testing Regulations. They ensure that the quality of these items can be measured without any ambiguity and controlled.
The quality assurance specifies inspections that in most cases are more extensive than those usually done in the production facilities. For example, biological parameters such as the absence of weeds and growth inhibitors are an integral part of the inspections. The emphasis placed on substrate structure is also unusual. Similarly, the quality assurance calls for retained samples that will allow for inspecting the quality of already delivered substrates as needed. The Quality and Testing Regulations also include the obligation to declare key properties of the substrates.
All the above underlines the advantages quality assurance offers to consumers and is consequently a selling point for producers.