What goes around comes around...

J.E. Shields jshields@indy.net
Tue, 24 Jan 2006 06:02:14 PST
Moral obligations are one thing.  Legal obligations are a different 
matter.  The legal aspects of "pirating" are simple:  if a plant clone, 
variety, seed strain, etc., is not protected by a plant patent, once sold 
to anyone it is in the public domain.

An individual breeder might contract with a particular grower or seller to 
collect royalties on a new variety, but unless the plant is protected by a 
plant patent, anyone else could buy (legally) a bulb from the seller and 
propagate from it freely without being bound by the other grower's contract 
with the breeder.

The Dutch have what they call "Breeders Rights" which -- unless actually 
plant patents -- are probably a matter of Dutch business agreements.  I'd 
be curious about their legal status.  John Grimshaw worked in The 
Netherlands in the plant trade for a couple years; John, what can you tell 
us about Dutch "Breeders Rights?"


I'm not a lawyer; I did work in the pharmaceutical industry for 28 years 
however, and there I dealt extensively with patent attorneys regarding 
patents and other aspects of intellectual property.  I'm inventor or 
co-inventor on about a dozen or so patents.

Jim Shields
in central Indiana (USA)

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5             Shields Gardens, Ltd.
P.O. Box 92              WWW:    http://www.shieldsgardens.com/
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA
Tel. ++1-317-867-3344     or      toll-free 1-866-449-3344 in USA

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