The Europe, Middle East, and Africa Technical Advisory Group (EMATAG) expanded its reach to Africa in 2011. The group, formally known as the Middle East and Europe Technical Advisory Group (MEETAG), originally met in 1997 as ETAG (European Technical Advisory Group). 

The purpose of the group is to:  

  • Enhance and expand the ISBT 128 Standard for use with blood components in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa;
  • Provide advice and support to facilities introducing the ISBT 128 Standard;
  • Generate, review, and comment upon proposed changes to the ISBT 128 Standard and its supporting documents;
  • Prepare educational material and tools to support the implementation of ISBT 128; and   
  • Promote the adoption of the ISBT 128 Standard in their region as well as globally. 

Summary of Recent Activity

The proposal for encoding the Single European Code (SEC) Data Structure was approved by the TAGs, allowing for the SEC to be encoded in a single data structure.

Placement of 2D symbol on the label continues to be discussed.

There are new active proposals for the following:

  • Allowing division codes to be used in the last two values of the Product Code Data Structure for Solvent Detergent Pooled Plasma Products
  • Harmonizing INN and USAN nonproprietary names with ISBT 128 terminology. MPHOs with nonproprietary names would be treated as a distinct product category within the ISBT 128 terminology (e.g., Product Description Codes that begin with H). A Product Description Code would be assigned to each MPHO with INN and USAN name.

A new proposal is for a Label Unique Identifier Data Structure is currently being discussed.

It was decided to look at a new proposal to help countries differentiate national codes based on product groups (blood, cellular therapy, and tissue) due to a number of different local codes being assigned by parties in the Netherlands that perform banking activities. Special attention must be given to the issuing of national codes (codes starting with A-D) in the Netherlands to avoid the duplicate product description codes.

EMATAG Member List

Representatives and Technical Experts

  • Muon, Mario – Chair
  • Al-Shaer, Laila
  • Antoniewicz-Papis, Jolanta
  • Arslan, Önder
  • Belay, Abiy
  • Brazier, Angela
  • Georgsen, Jørgen
  • Goubron, Heidi
  • Gudmundsson, Sveinn
  • Hanstein, Galina
  • Kurt, Gerhard
  • Laakso, Teemu
  • Larsson, Stella
  • Lodge, Linda
  • Orlin, Jerry
  • Radwan, Reem Al
  • Reite, Ingunn Wideroe
  • Salat, Antonio
  • Sidera, Zoe
  • Vonk, Jelle
  • Wagner, Thomas


  • Aranko, Kari
  • Hay, Christian


  • Auwema, Fred
  • Böcker, Wolfgang
  • Borg-Aquilina, Denise
  • Bratek, Piotr
  • Burgos, Virginia
  • Cetinkaya, Sukru
  • Csore, Miklos
  • Dell'Orto, Luca
  • Henry, Stephen
  • Herzberg, Mark
  • Ioannou, Yiota
  • Ketari, Kamel
  • Kirimli, Kent
  • Larson, Christie
  • Macias, Elaine
  • Mårtensson, Anna
  • Miller, Wayne
  • Morris, Stuart
  • Muircroft, John
  • Newton, John
  • Nord, Björn
  • Ongun, Guclu
  • Pereda, Pedro
  • Perry, Andrew
  • Plestrak, Grzegorz
  • Riout, Franck
  • Risopatron, Teresa
  • Roger, Jean-Paul
  • Rousselin, Bruno
  • Saez, Mariola
  • Sajot, Stéphane
  • Sandvik, Leif
  • Simmons, Suzanne
  • Valletta, Kevin
  • Waurzyniak, Daniel
  • Wray, Bruce


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