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Agrément, when literally translated, means approval. It is really a methodology that is used to establish the fitness for purpose of any item. In relation to Agrément in the UK and the British Board of Agrément, the methodology is applied to construction and building products and systems. If a product or system is successfully assessed, a very detailed document known as an Agrément Certificate is issues that establishes in a quantifiable manner the performance capability of the product or system. Designers, architects, procurers and others can use this information to evolve appropriate specifications.
A product or system is approved on the basis of a number of performance characteristics that are subject to test. It is sometimes necessary to invent such tests particularly if the product is innovative or deviating from a National Standard. There are Agrément authorities throughout the world and within Europe there is a European Union of Agrément, which aims to assist acceptance of Certificates that have issued in another member state. This is achieved by a procedure called ‘Confirmation’. Liaison also occurs through the World Federation of Technical Approval Organisations.
Further details of UK Agrément can be obtained from the British Board of Agrément’s website.
Acknowledgement: British Board of Agrément