The establishment of best practices for the implementation of WGS for typing and characterization of microbial pathogens will ensure reliable, comparable, and transparent processes underlying infectious disease risk and management decisions.

Best practices for implementing NGS in clinical settings for diagnostics of infectious disease include the provision of documentation for validation and quality assurance, high capacity data storage, version traceability and data transfer confidentiality, as essential components for meeting regulatory standards (Gargis et al, 2015; Roy et al, 2018; Gargis et al, 2016). In addition to clinical best practices, current best practices in bioinformatics for food safety also include the implementation of data standards; maintainability of software; the demonstration of data integrity, and auditability; as well as the development of frameworks for reporting and interpretation (Lambert et al, 2017).

The IRIDA project team has participated in the creation of best practices for the application of genomic data supporting regulatory food safety, and continue to work with international groups such as the International Organization for Standards (ISO) to improve food safety and industry standards. Accordingly, the IRIDA platform has been developed according to these best practices since its inception.