ANSI is short for the American National Standards Institute; it is a private not for profit organization that oversees voluntary consensus standards in the U.S. ANSI is the sole U.S. representative to the International Standards Organization (ISO). This means that ANSI coordinates U.S. standards with World standards so that the U.S. products can be used worldwide. It is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
ANSI, itself, does not accredit standards; it oversees the use and development of standards by accrediting the procedure of standards developing bodies. An ANSI accreditation signifies that these standards developing organizations have used procedures that meet the institute’s requirements.
The importance of meeting standards could be explained in one small example, i.e., the shoe fit. You can be a size 9 for one brand and a size 9.5 with the other brand. This is because each shoe manufacturer has its own standards of measurement.
It is important to develop voluntary consensus standards since it helps increase the market acceptance of various products and services; it also clarifies how one can increase the safety of the products, thus enhancing the protection for the end consumer.