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Board for Plant Varieties
Sotaweg 22, 2371 GD Roelofarendsveen, The Netherlands
P.O. Box 14, 2370 AA Roelofarendsveen, The Netherlands
Listing of varieties naturally adapted to local or regional conditions or landraces (conservation varieties) and hobby market varieties
The procedure for application for listing and marketing of landraces, varieties naturally adapted to local or regional conditions, and varieties developed for growing under particular conditions with no intrinsic value for commercial crop production, differ from those for common varieties.
Old landraces may not comply with the general requirements for uniformity or VCU. Other varieties may be developed especially for e.g. the hobby market. The turnover for such varieties may be so little, that the costs for a DUS test might be higher than the profit made.
About the variety test
Conservation of genetic variation
In the European Community it is recognized that there is a substantial risk to loose genetic variation and plant genetic resources if these varieties are not properly registered and their maintenance not inspected. In order to preserve conservation varieties and varieties developed for growing under particular conditions as well as genetic resources, and to get insight in the numbers and identity of such varieties, the European Commission has adopted two Directives. Directive 2008/62 (agriculture) provides for certain derogations for acceptance and marketing of seeds and seed potatoes of conservation varieties and Directive 2009/145 (vegetables) provides for certain derogations for acceptance and marketing of seeds of vegetable conservation varieties and varieties developed for growing under particular conditions (e.g. hobby market).
Derogations and conditions for registration
In The Netherlands it is decided to accept only varieties that are actually marketed. Another decision is that with a turnover of less than 500 € per year a variety does not need to be listed. Below this threshold there is no obligation to apply for registration. Furthermore, the variety should not be included in the Dutch Variety Register, nor had been included in the past 2 years.
Restrictions for marketing
There are quantitative restrictions for the marketing of a conservation variety and varieties developed for growing under particular conditions (seed, seed potatoes).
The seed production, conservation and marketing of the variety should take place in the region of origin. Furthermore there are limitations regarding the production area. The supplier’s label should show the following information: ‘certified seed of a conservation variety’ or ‘standard seed of a conservation variety’ .
Varieties developed for growing under particular conditions (hobby market)
Quantitative restrictions require seed only to be marketed in small packages. The supplier’s label should show the following information: ‘variety developed for growing under particular conditions’.
The size of the seed production area and the quantities of seed per package are given in the annexes of the Directives.
The autorisation Directive is not applicable for landraces, varieties naturally adapted to local or regional conditions (conservation varieties) and varieties developed for growing under particular conditions (hobby market varieties). For these categories there are restrictions for the marketing of seed and for growing areas. See EU Directives 2008/62 (Agriculture) and 2009/145 (Vegetables).
Examination for acceptance of a conservation or hobby variety
In principle the DUS examination for acceptance of a variety and subsequent inclusion in the EU Common Catalogue takes one growing cycle. The application will be compared with the Technical Questionnaire received from the applicant. If necessary, the application will also be compared with descriptions from other sources. A description will be made using the examination and sources. Resistance characteristics will not be performed. When uniformity will be tested on the basis of off-types, a population standard of 10% and an acceptance probability of at least 90% shall be applied.
VCU examination will be performed only in case of exceptional cultivation value.
If examined varieties meet the requirements, they will be included in the Dutch Variety Register and subsequently in the EU Common Catalogues.
In principle once in 10 years a variety is subject to official post control by verifying its varietal identity and varietal purity. These inspections are carried out by Naktuinbouw Inspection Department.
Application of conservation varieties and hobby varieties
Firstly the status of the applied varieties will be established as well as the responsible person for the maintenance of the variety. Checking will be done on whether the variety ( perhaps under a synonym) may be included already in the Dutch Variety Register and subsequently The EU Common Catalogue.
The applicant has to send an application form as well as a completed technical questionnaire (TQ). On the basis of the description on the TQ the application will be examined. In order to perform the examination, a sample of the variety should be delivered. The general conditions for plant material are applicable for agricultural and vegetable varieties. For vegetable varieties there are specific conditions for the quantity of the material. For agricultural varieties the conditions for the quantity are the same as for ‘normal’ applications.
When there are more applicants for the same variety, it is their responsibility to settle who will apply and if and how costs will be shared.