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Article

Advances in the Registration of Farmers’ Varieties: Four Cases from the Global South

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Law Group, Department of Social Sciences, Wageningen University, 6708 PB Wageningen, The Netherlands
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Oxfam Novib, 6708 PB The Hague, The Netherlands
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Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), 00153 Rome, Italy
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Fundación PROINPA, Cochabamba 4285, Bolivia
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National Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development Research Institute (NAFRI), Laos Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Vientiane, Laos
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Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research and Development, Pokhara P.O. Box 324, Nepal
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Nepal Agricultural Research Council, Kathmandu P.O. Box 5459, Nepal
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Community Technology Development Trust (CTDT), Harare, Zimbabwe
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Champion Farmer Seeds Cooperative Company, Harare, Zimbabwe
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Seed Services Institute, Harare P.O. Box CY594, Zimbabwe
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Niels P. Louwaars
Agronomy 2021, 11(11), 2282; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112282
Received: 15 September 2021 / Revised: 28 October 2021 / Accepted: 2 November 2021 / Published: 11 November 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Policies in Plant Breeding—Rights and Obligations)
Over the last few decades, there has been a growing appreciation of crop varieties developed by local farmers, commonly referred to as farmers’ varieties. These varieties often have attractive characteristics for both producers and consumers, such as adaptability to harsh environmental conditions and high nutritional values. Yet they are usually not sold in formal markets, and tend to be limited to farmers’ seed systems. This is partially due to national seed laws that, in an effort to guarantee good quality seed of uniform and stable varieties, create obstacles for farmers’ varieties to reach the market. This article describes the experiences of four countries—Bolivia, Laos, Nepal and Zimbabwe—that are developing alternative variety registration systems for farmers’ varieties. Most of these cases have never been documented before. The cases present the main drivers behind and approaches to the registration of farmers’ varieties in different legal contexts and at different stages of development. We conclude that farmers’ variety registration systems can generate benefits including faster and cheaper variety releases, improved farmer incomes, and a larger diversity of well-adapted varieties in the market—but some important issues are still to be resolved. View Full-Text
Keywords: plant variety registration; farmers’ seed systems; farmer varieties; seed laws; seed quality control plant variety registration; farmers’ seed systems; farmer varieties; seed laws; seed quality control
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MDPI and ACS Style

De Jonge, B.; López Noriega, I.; Otieno, G.; Cadima, X.; Terrazas, F.; Hpommalath, S.; van Oudenhoven, F.; Shrestha, S.; Pudasaini, N.; Singh Shrestha, D.; Gauchan, D.; Kasasa, P.; Bwerazuva, T.; Mujaju, C.; Manjengwa, S. Advances in the Registration of Farmers’ Varieties: Four Cases from the Global South. Agronomy 2021, 11, 2282. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112282

AMA Style

De Jonge B, López Noriega I, Otieno G, Cadima X, Terrazas F, Hpommalath S, van Oudenhoven F, Shrestha S, Pudasaini N, Singh Shrestha D, Gauchan D, Kasasa P, Bwerazuva T, Mujaju C, Manjengwa S. Advances in the Registration of Farmers’ Varieties: Four Cases from the Global South. Agronomy. 2021; 11(11):2282. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112282

Chicago/Turabian Style

De Jonge, Bram, Isabel López Noriega, Gloria Otieno, Ximena Cadima, Franz Terrazas, Siviengkhek Hpommalath, Frederik van Oudenhoven, Santosh Shrestha, Niranjan Pudasaini, Deepa Singh Shrestha, Devendra Gauchan, Patrick Kasasa, Tsungai Bwerazuva, Claid Mujaju, and Sipiwe Manjengwa. 2021. "Advances in the Registration of Farmers’ Varieties: Four Cases from the Global South" Agronomy 11, no. 11: 2282. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112282

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