Garden Organic welcomes seed law concessions

Organic growing charity Garden Organic has given a cautious welcome to the new EU seed directive as a "step in the right direction" but with a need for "vigilance in the future" after fears the proposals would put plant biodiversity at risk.

The new Regulation on Marketing of Plant Reproductive Material (PRM), which was made public on Monday 6 May by the EU, exempts local heritage seed networks such as Garden Organic’s Heritage Seed library and allows seed exchange between individuals and groups.

The new directive also identifies for the first time a need for more relaxed registration rules for heritage varieties and conservation varieties including land races - with all such categories being exempt from the testing or other requirements for the legislation.

The directive will be restricted to commercial growers and home gardeners will be permitted to save and swap unapproved seed. Individuals and small organisations will also be able to grow and supply/sell unapproved vegetable seed - as long as they have less than 10 employees and an annual turnover of less than 2m euros.

Garden Organic development director Bret Willers said: "We welcome the news that the EU has seen sense and chosen not to include the Heritage Seed Library and small scale seed exchange networks within this legislation.

"It’s very much a step in the right direction from the EU but we must be vigilant for the future to ensure there is no backtracking to some of the original and more draconian proposals.

Despite the concessions, the charity has said that other parts of the law are quite restrictive and there are clauses that mean the concessions could be removed in the future without coming back to the parliament for a vote.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Business Planning - Brace now for Brexit impact

Business Planning - Brace now for Brexit impact

Neville Stein advises how businesses can act now to protect themselves against higher plant import costs after the Brexit deadline.

Horticulture careers - plugging the skills gap

Horticulture careers - plugging the skills gap

Bespoke apprenticeships and internal training are helping firms to get ahead in skills-shortage horticulture, says Rachel Anderson.

Tractors: market roundup

Tractors: market roundup

Manufacturers are working to provide solutions to many challenges. Sally Drury looks at their newest models.


Opinion... Why no-deal Brexit should worry you

Opinion... Why no-deal Brexit should worry you

Whether you voted leave or remain all those years ago, a "no-deal" Brexit should worry you.

I will not be importing oaks this season. Will you?

I will not be importing oaks this season. Will you?

I find myself in a difficult situation. A few weeks ago I was fortunate to be present to hear details of imminent changes to regulations concerning Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) and oak trees. I heard details, asked questions and probed the implications of these changes. That may not sound like a difficult position to be in, yet I am uneasy.

Opinion... Better targets to tackle pollution

Opinion... Better targets to tackle pollution

Lobby groups jumping onto fashionable campaigns, often to promote their own interests, can do much more harm than good. Take, for example, the move against black polythene plant pots and containers.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +

HORTICULTURE WEEK BUSINESS Awards 2019

The Horticulture Week Business Awards is now open for entries

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 60 Ornamentals nurseries

See our exclusive RANKING of ornamentals nurseries by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS

Tim Edwards

Boningales Nursery chairman Tim Edwards on the business of ornamentals production
 

Read Tim Edwards

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world
 

Read more Peter Seabrook articles