Dietary Supplement Reference Standards

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USP Reference Standards are highly characterized substances intended for use in conducting the quality control tests and analytical procedures associated with documentary standards found in the USP–NF, DSC, and FCC.

Benefits of Use

A potential time and cost savings resource, USP Reference Standards can help manufacturers demonstrate and authenticate the quality of the dietary supplement ingredients they manufacture and use.

  • Increased safety of dietary supplement ingredients: The analytical results of reference standards permit side-by-side comparison of this authentic material and any unknown component as a way to confirm the unknown component's identity and aid in excluding the presence of adulterating agents.
  • Enhanced reliability of analytical test results: Reference standards are frequently used by test laboratories to calibrate analytical methods or as quality control samples. Both uses will increase the reliability of analytical test procedures, aid in quality audits, and generally enhance the level of confidence in the test results.


USP's current catalog features more than 3,200 items, including more than 200 Reference Standards for dietary supplements (e.g., amino acids, botanicals, vitamins-minerals, and fish oils). Learn more about USP Reference Standards or download the USP Catalog to view and buy available reference stanadards.

Learn how you can help develop USP Reference Standards for dietary supplements.