Updates on Plant Variety Protection

Issue #26, 13 December 2016

 

1. Editorial

 

This issue of the Updates highlights the APBREBES report on the UPOV Autumn session. An IP Watch report focuses on the interrelations between UPOV and ITPGRFA, which were the topic of a public Symposium organised by UPOV. The Recommendations of the Global Consultation on Farmers’ Rights are reproduced in this issue of the Updates, completing a report on the event in the Updates issue #25 . Finally, three publications on plant variety protection legislation are featured.

 

2. APBREBES Report on UPOV’s 2016 Autumn Session

 

UPOV member states and observers gathered in Geneva between the 24th and 28th of October for UPOV's Autumn session. The interested public could attend two events:

 

Read more

 

 

 

3. IP Watch: Panel Explores Relation Between Plant Breeders’ Convention and Plant Treaty

 

When countries belong to several international instruments, some aspects of those instruments may run contradictory to one another. A symposium held recently by the International Convention for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) sought to explore the interrelations between the convention and the international treaty on plant genetic resources for food and agriculture. Farmers’ rights lie at the intersection of the two treaties and while some find the treaties complementary, some others view them as contradictory on farmers’ rights.

 

Read more

 

4. Recommendations of the Global Consultation on Farmers’ Rights, held 27th to 30th September in Indonesia

 

Participants at the Global Consultation on Farmers’ Rights in Bali, Indonesia, 27–30 September 2016, shared views, experiences and examples of best practices related to the implementation of Farmers' Rights as addressed in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (‘the International Treaty’). They also identified a range of issues that may affect the realization of Farmers’ Rights, and discussed a draft list of recommendations to the Governing Body in this regard.

 

The following constitutes the Co-chairs’ summary of recommendations to the Governing Body:

 

Read more

 

5. Publications

 

GRAIN (2016) New trade deals legalise corporate theft

 

Since 2001, GRAIN has been tracking how so-called free trade agreements (FTAs), negotiated largely in secret, outside the World Trade Organisation (WTO) are being used to go beyond existing international standards on intellectual property rights regarding life forms. In this report, GRAIN provides an update on the FTAs that are legalising corporate theft and threatening farmers’ ability to save, produce and exchange seeds around the world.

 

Read the report

 

Shalini Bhutani (2016): Intellectual Property Rights Policy Fails to Address Farmers’ Rights and Needs

 

India had already made a significant policy shift towards a pro-intellectual property (IP) position in the seed sector two decades ago, when it became a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 1995. Many existing laws were amended,

 

Read the article

 

 

Claire H. Luby, Irwin L. Goldman (2016): Freeing Crop Genetics through the Open Source Seed Initiative

 

For millennia, seeds have been freely available to use for farming and plant breeding without restriction. Within the past century, however, intellectual property rights (IPRs) have threatened this tradition. In response, a movement has emerged to counter the trend toward increasing consolidation of control and ownership of plant germplasm. One effort, the Open Source Seed Initiative (OSSI, www.osseeds.org), aims to ensure access to crop genetic resources by embracing an open source mechanism that fosters exchange and innovation among farmers, plant breeders, and seed companies.

 

Read the publication

 

Upcoming Events

 

Monday, 3 April to Wednesday, 5 April (morning) Technical Committee

 

Wednesday, 5 April (afternoon) Working Group on a Possible International System of Cooperation

 

Thursday, 6 April (morning) Consultative Committee

 

Thursday, 6 April (afternoon) Council (extraordinary session)

 

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Feedback & Contact

 

Susanne Gura, Coordinator

 

Association for Plant Breeding for the Benefit of Society (APBREBES)

 

Office: Burghofstr. 116, 53229 Bonn, Germany

 

Ph: 0049 228 948 0670

 

Mob: 0049 177 669 1400

 

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