The study "The UPOV accession process: Preventing appropriate PVP laws for new members", published today by the South Centre and APBREBES, analyses the accession process for countries that want to become members of UPOV and provides both surprising and worrying results.
The APBREBES opinion paper by Jack Kloppenburg, Professor Emeritus, Department of Community and Environmental Sociology, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Secretary of the Open Source Seed Initiative, shows the linkages between the concentration of the seed industry, intellectual property rights, and restricted access to plant genetic material for further breeding. Even if the situation in the United States cannot be compared with that in other countries, the findings and demands in the article are certainly of interest worldwide.
This is an unauthorised translation from the original Spanish. Translator: Katie Whiddon.
The translation was initiated and funded by APBREBES and HEKS/EPER.
This Briefing Paper explains how the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and Other People Working in Rural Areas (UNDROP) complements the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA), in particular its Article 9 on Farmers’ Rights, and how their joint implementation is essential for the realization of farmers’ and peasants’ rights.
The briefing paper highlights the main arguments why Indonesia should not join UPOV - and why it should not be pressured to do so by its northern trading partners.
This research paper aims to identify the extent of the offensive efforts carried out by the European Union in the trade policy pursued by European Commission officials around the globe, advocating the adoption of formalised and strong plant variety protection in trade partners’ national laws.
Because of the negative effects on farmer managed seed systems, APBREBES and Both Ends are demanding the EU to stop requiring developing countries to adopt the 1991 Act of the UPOV Convention through trade agreements or any other activities.
The new APBREBES study “Searching for flexibility - Why parties to the 1978 Act of the UPOV Convention have not acceded to the 1991 Act” explores the debates around plant variety protection (PVP) in nine countries that are parties to UPOV 78.
The study reveals the quest of countries for flexibility in their regulation of PVP – flexibility severely restricted under UPOV 1991. The Author demonstrates that by far the most contentious aspect of UPOV 1991 has been its implications for farmers’ rights and peasant seed systems. Countries that have not acceded to the 1991 Act were trying to avoid exacerbating existing conflicts with other domestic and international legal norms, the study found. This highlights the importance of retaining the flexibility to adapt PVP laws to national needs and circumstances and therefore to refrain from acceding to UPOV 91.
The report published by SEARICE, APBREBES and Fastenopfer analyses the factors which led to Vietnam’s agricultural development in the last few decades. The main finding of the research is simple: “While plant breeding is necessary, agricultural development must be detached from the notion that a draconian plant variety protection law is a fundamental prerequisite. The PVP law has marginal effects to crop development. Vietnam’s agricultural development is not the result of the PVP Law, but rather a complex interaction of various interventions by the government.
The new APBREBES publication compiles selected literature on the issue of plant variety protection (PVP) and especially on the relevance and impact of the 1991 Convention of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) in the context of developing countries. The publication aims to inform policymakers and other stakeholders with robust studies and evidence-based facts, so that policy is not made in a void or absence of knowledge. In this regard, APBREBES hopes that the publication will be beneficial for those working on PVP laws and the related policy questions that may arise. The publication can be downloaded from our Website in English, French, and Spanish.