Plant Breeders' Rights for Food Security and Economic Development

An effective Plant Breeder’s Rights System can ensure and improve food security in any country by stimulating the development of improved plant varieties. Farmers will get access to better varieties which means that their economic development will be enhanced. Do you want to learn what plant breeders’ rights in accordance with the UPOV Convention are and how a Plant Variety Protection System works? Then this course is of interest to you.

Organised by Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation

Mon 14 March 2022 until Fri 20 May 2022

Duration 10 weeks / 8hrs per week
Scholarships Yes
Scholarship Application September / October
Course Format Online
Credits Certificate

What will you learn?

The following subjects will be discussed during this course:

  • Legal aspects – legal framework, requirements of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), patents, regulations relating to genetic resource use;
  • Institutional aspects – procedures and administration, organisational setup, variety registration systems, collaboration and testing;
  • Technical aspects – the principle of Distinctness,Uniformity and Stability (DUS), practical DUS-testing, UPOV guidelines, field testing, biochemical/ molecular techniques, statistics, data analysis, reporting, variety denomination;
  • Exploitation of plant breeders rights – enforcing rights, royalty collection, farm saved seed.

Practical trainings on DUS testing form part of the course and visits will be made to seed certification services, breeding companies and the Aalsmeer flower auction.

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For whom is this course?

Applicants should have a position in the plant variety protection system or have a position that will give them such responsibilities in the near future. Countries that have recently developed a plant variety protection law, or those that are currently in the process of developing such legislation, will be given priority. We also welcome employees of the legal departments in the agricultural industry. Applicants should have an agricultural or horticultural education at a minimum of BSc level or a legal education supplemented with practical experience in agriculture and horticulture. Participants are expected to be proficient in English.

Course programme in more detail

The protection of the rights of plant breeders is an important stimulus for the development of better plant varieties. The possibility to claim intellectual property rights on a variety gives a breeder the exclusive rights to exploit it and to prevent others from doing so illegally.

Many countries are therefore developing and implementing a legal framework for the protection of plant varieties within an intellectual property rights system. Besides developing legislation, the implementation of the Plant Breeders' Rights system has far-reaching consequences of a legal, institutional, technical, financial and commercial nature. In this course, participants will learn about these consequences, and about practical ways to implement new regulations.

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Courses are currently online

Our courses are currently online. Check the course details for more information about the online course format.

Application for this course

On top of this page you can apply for the course 'Plant Breeders' Rights for Food Security and Economic Development'. Depending on your nationality, your organisation and the type of course you wish to join, your eligibility and the application procedures may differ. Find out more about the requirements and the application process.