About Us

GEVES is an official organisation for variety evaluation and seed testing. It is recognised both nationally and internationally for its in-depth and innovative expertise across all cultivated plant species.

Official Missions

GEVES, the French Variety and Seed Study and Control Group, has three official missions:

  • Registration of new plant varieties in the official catalogue
  • Legal protection of varieties (plant variety rights)
  • Seed certification according to international standards

GEVES is also responsible for the national coordination of plant genetic resources for the Ministry of Agriculture.

GEVES is designated as the National Reference Laboratory for:

  • Detection of GMOS in maize (seeds) and soya, rapeseed and flax (seeds and vegetative parts)
  • Quality testing of seeds and propagating material

Activities

In addition to these missions, GEVES is an internationally renowned centre of expertise for plant and seed related activities. This includes involvement in research activities, management of genetic resources, and specialised training courses. GEVES also monitors a national network of laboratories for seed analysis.

GEVES makes its specialised expertise openly available to the plant and seed sectors, providing high-quality services to a range of private customers. Please consult our price list for more information.

Status

GEVES is a public interest group founded from 3 partner organisations :

  • The French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA)
  • The French Ministry of Agriculture (MAAF)
  • The French National Interprofessional Organisation for Seeds and Plants (GNIS)

This unique set-up ensures GEVES’s independence and neutrality in carrying out its activities for the benefit of the public. The union of state, research, and sector expertise ensures that all factors of the sector are fully taken into account.

 

Governing Bodies

GEVES is headed by its Managing Director, Mr Arnaud DELTOUR, and its President, Mr Christian HUYGHE.

The Board of Directors monitors GEVES’s activities and its management. It is composed of a Government Commissioner, a State Controller, and 13 members:

  • 6 representatives from INRA
  • 2 representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture
  • 2 representatives from GNIS
  • 2 staff representatives from GEVES
  • The President of the CTPS

Organisational Structure

GEVES is organised internally into three operating divisions for its technical activities (Seed testing, Variety testing, and Molecular biology and biochemistry). It also has a support department that provides finance, HR and IT support, as well as the executive management and its related services.

In addition, GEVES provides the CTPS and INOV with offices and employees for its administrative activities.

For more information, please consult the Organisation Chart and the Map of Locations.

History

1884   Creation of National Seed Testing Station (SNES)

1905   First French law on seed trade

1932   Creation of Official French Catalogue for species and varieties

1942   Creation of CTPS

1961   Signature of Paris Convention and creation of UPOV

1971   Creation of GEVES as a department of INRA

1972   Creation of European Common Catalogue

1989   GEVES becomes a Public Interest Group

1993   SNES relocates to Beaucouzé

2009

GEVES Head Office relocates from Versailles to Anjou, a leading French region for plant research and production

2012

CPOV becomes INOV (National Office for plant breeders’ rights) and relocates to GEVES Head Office at Beaucouzé .

2016

GEVES is accorded the mission of coordination of plant genetic resources by the Ministry of Agriculture

National and International Partners

Participation in national and international cooperation is a top priority for GEVES. Through its missions and its position in the industry, GEVES works in partnership with numerous organisations, scientific partners, and industry professionals. In particular, GEVES contributes to the activities of UPOV and ISTA, and exchanges regularly with the European Community Plant Variety Office.

National Partners:

Official Bodies (variety registration and protection, seed quality analysis, research projects)

Industry professionals (associations, research institutes)

  • French National Interprofessional Group for Seeds and Plants (GNIS)
  • French Union of Seed Companies (UFS)
  • French National Federation of Seed Growers (FNAMS)
  • Research institutes: Arvalis plant institute, Terres Inovia, the French Technical Institute for Beet (ITB), the French Research Institute for Organic Farming (ITAB).

Our scientific partnerships are coordinated by GEVES's Scientific Coordination department.

 

International Partners:

In Europe, the seed trade is regulated by EU directives, and internationally it is governed by the ISTA rules. GEVES is actively involved at an international level in developing the methods and protocols of ISTA, UPOV and ISHI and also shares knowledge and expertise with its international counterparts. This involvement makes it faster and easier to introduce new methods and ensures that the conditions of seed production in France are taken into account.

As regards plant variety testing, GEVES maintains close partnerships with a wide variety of international organisations, in particular with EU institutions such as the CPVO. This collaboration is a top priority for GEVES, allowing partners to promote knowledge exchange, enhance collaborative research, and tackle international challenges together.