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If you’ve ever taken a look through our selection of wire shelving units, you’ve seen the phrase “NSF approved.” But what does it mean to be NSF approved?

NSF stands for National Sanitation Foundation. The National Sanitation Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization founded in 1944 to create a standard set of sanitation and safety requirements for equipment used in the food service industry. Since then, the NSF has become an internationally-recognized and respected organization and also tests products such as water bottles, auto parts, cosmetics, and more.

For a product to be approved by the NSF, there is a NSF certification procedure to go through. Our NSF approved shelving has gone through this process and is certified as being safe to use for storing food and medicine.

First, the manufacturer has to apply to have their product tested by the NSF. NSF testing is voluntary; they don’t test every product available on the market. But since the NSF is so highly respected by public health regulators worldwide, having the distinction of being NSF approved means it will be trusted and approved by inspectors and regulators everywhere.

Next, the product is evaluated and tested by a varied group of professionals including chemists, toxicologists, engineers, microbiologists, and public health officials to ensure the product in question meets the standards set by the NSF. The standards they look for varies depending on the product being tested. If a product is being tested for use in the food industry, such as NSF restaurant shelving they look for things like whether or not the product is cleanable, whether or not it’s made with materials that contain harmful chemicals, and if it can resist bacterial growth.

The factory where the product is manufactured is also inspected to make sure it is being produced in a safe environment. If the product itself and its production environment are approved by the NSF, the product is officially certified and manufacturers are allowed to feature the NSF emblem on their product.

Once a product is approved by the NSF, it isn’t necessarily approved forever. The product will be re-tested annually and the factory where it is manufactured will also be subject to annual, unannounced inspections to verify that the product still meets their high expectations.

This sort of rigorous inspection and testing environment helps to ensure the safety, reliability, and durability of any NSF-approved product, including NSF germ resistant plastic shelves and NSF wire utility carts, for use in a variety of settings.

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