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Inspection standards for quality control in China

AQF_Standards d'inspection de contrôle qualité en Chine selon le Quality Control Blog

The inspection standards are tools which define acceptable quality limits, that are made understandable to all parties involved in the production process: buyer, supplier and QC company. It is important that these inspection standards are unified and applied by all parties as confirmed prior to the production launch. This article summarizes the most important inspection standards for quality control in China and Asia.

Inspection standards for quality control in China based on ISO 2859 and AQL level II (0, 2.5, 4) for Workmanship & Appearance

The most commonly used inspection standard for quality control inspections in China and Asia is the “AQL level II (0, 2.5, 4)”. This is a common abbreviation to define the sample size and quality limits. It includes:

  • Sample size: General inspection level II
  • Samples picking rule: drawn from square root of cartons
  • Quality limits for defects per 100: critical (0), major (2.5), minor (4)

Specifications & comparison with sample

A smaller sample size serves for checking of specifications (labelling, packaging, assortment…) and to compare the production samples with the approval sample. All non-conformities are reported.

On-site tests & national regulations

An inspection should always check the usability and durability of a product. Specific tests are designed to simulate every-day usage in a short time during the inspection, including 3-M test on prints, rub test, carton drop test, use, fatigue and abuse tests…

Many on-site tests are simplifications of laboratory tests, necessary to pass import regulations in Europe and the Americas.

Inspection standards should be clearly mentioned in the buyer’s purchase order which will be shared with the supplier and the QC company.

And you: which inspection standards for quality control in China do you follow?


AQF Quality team

We ensure service quality and reliability by improving the performance of our processes. We follow up and train inspectors and supervisors to enhance their skills and meet the latest regulations and standards. In the Quality Control Blog we write about the industry changes and provide solutions for a better Quality Control management in Asia. For more information.

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2 responses to “Inspection standards for quality control in China”

  1. I’ll add ISO 2859 is equivalent to either ANSI/ASQC Z1.4, NF06-022, BS 6001, DIN 40080.

    Moreover, it may be useful to understand how defects are classified into minor / major / critical :

    – Critical defect – Any condition found which poses the possibility of causing injury or harm to, or otherwise endangering the life or safety of, the end user of the product or others in the immediate vicinity of its use.

    – Major defect – Any condition found adversely affecting the product’s marketability and sale-ability or adversely affecting its required form, fit or function and which is likely to result in the end user returning it to the source from which is was purchased for replacement or refund.

    – Minor defect – Any condition found which while possibly less than desirable to the end user of the product, does not adversely affect its required marketability, sale-ability, form, fit or function and is unlikely to result in its return to the source from which it was purchased.

    Frédéric CAMPANA

    • mm Claire Piccinno says:

      @Frédéric: many thanks for your input. You have been quicker than the team. We are planning to publish an article about it very soon… keep an eye on the coming articles, your comments are very welcome!

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