All new varieties - provided they pass the administrative and technical examinations successfully - can be protected by a specific intellectual property right called a Plant Variety Right (PVR).
PVRs grant the holder an exclusive right to the variety for certain acts: production, reproduction, conditioning, offering for sale, selling, marketing, exporting, and importing. PVRs also grant the holder the right to exclude all other parties from using the protected variety without authorisation. However, unlike patented varieties, varieties protected by a PVR can be used freely for plant breeding purposes, thereby facilitating access to genetic diversity. This is called the breeder’s exemption.
For some species, PVRs enable farmers to reuse the seeds under certain conditions.
This exclusive right is valid for a period of 25-30 years depending on the species* from its date of issue. As of 4 January 1996, this protection applies to the entire plant kingdom.
In France, PVRs are issued by INOV and are effective only in France. For larger geographical protection, the applicant can extend their request in France by priority to other countries. The applicant can also apply for a plant variety right that is valid throughout the European Union through a single application to the CPVO.
It is not yet possible to acquire international protection through one application.
*25 years in general, and 30 years for forest, fruit and ornamental trees, vine, potato, perennial forage grasses and legumes, and inbred lines used for producing hybrid varieties.
Apply for a PVR