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S2 dynamics of proprietary seed mazourek acorn


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Dynamics of Proprietary Seed

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S2 dynamics of proprietary seed mazourek acorn

  1. 1. ynamics of Proprietary Seed Michael Mazourek
  2. 2. Formality in Well-Intentioned Partnerships • Documentation as a way to prevent misunderstandings • Ensuring the stability of non-profit/publicly developed seeds • The different value and role of these seeds and efforts • The opinions expressed are my own and should not be construed to necessarily represent my colleagues, university or funders • I am sharing this from my perspective and based on systems I am familiar with in the USA. Your practices and regulations surely have some differences.
  3. 3. Public/Private Dynamic I • Beginning of 20th century • Open-pollinated seeds saved for planting • Advent of certified seed programs lead to quality assurance and the first seed companies • Public sector develops new cultivars
  4. 4. Public/Private Dynamic II • Hybrids become available and lead to intellectual property • Seed companies start in-house breeding • 1970 PVP expands ownership • 1980’s Biotech attracts international petrochemical and pharma companies • Public vegetable breeders extract novel traits for germplasm development
  5. 5. Public/Private Dynamic III • Industry consolidation leads to market focus (& unmet needs) • “Organic” restores $ value to quality • Resurgence of small seed companies • Little “in-house” breeding creates demand for locally adapted open-pollinated seed
  6. 6. Public/Private Dynamic IV • Public plant breeders should leave a legacy: • Train others in the art • Publish their methods • Create seeds that can be utilized • Obligation to safeguard those resources • Abide by regulations • Preserve public nature
  7. 7. The Pedigree Breeding Process Idea Cross-pollination F1 Hybrid F2 Selection F3-F5 Evaluations Inspiration/Need/Trial Result F6 Replicated Trial F8 Shared with growers/may be cultivar Shared with key growers/seed limited/unstable Shared with growers/modest supply/uniform Broad distribution of abundant seed by company
  8. 8. Searching for Seed • Breeding company vs distributor info • Potential to make inquiry to breeder about using seed • Document acquisition of new seeds • Utility Patent • Can cover traits and seed from plant • Plants propagated by seed • Bag tags • Depends on the tag • Plant Variety Protection (PVP) • Commercial reproduction of seed restricted
  9. 9. MTA: Material Transfer Agreement • Mazourek often shares around 600 seed samples with home gardeners, produce growers and seed companies each year • These are free • We only request they sign an MTA first • Our intent is for this to be a positive way to preserve a public seed source • t-MTA.pdf
  10. 10. MTA: Material Transfer Agreement • The seed is a free sample • The recipient may not patent or restrict the use of others to use the seed or its traits or derivatives • The recipient may not go into commercial production without a license • The recipient may not distribute the seed but instead should direct them to me for seed
  11. 11. License • We try to do all non-exclusive licenses • Exceptions occur when a company has sponsored the research, but even then the exclusivity expires after about 5 years • The licensee pays a royalty on seed sales • 10% if they use the cultivar as is, prorated if they use it as a hybrid parent or for breeding • 80% of this royalty is returned to my breeding program for future improvements
  12. 12. My University is Progressive • Royalties support and stabilize my breeding program • They support keeping my seeds in the public domain