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What is infringement
or piracy?

Infringement, or piracy, is the (re)production and selling of seeds/plants of protected varieties or the use of protected product names and logos or packaging material and variety pictures without the explicit authorization of the rights holder.

What is the impact of piracy?


Plant breeding in horticulture has great impact on our lives. It creates new products, with better taste, disease resistances, reducing the need for pesticides and resulting in higher efficiency and less waste in production, attractive colour, longer storage life, and increased health aspects. It contributes to the prominent place of vegetables in food consumption. It fuels economic growth and stimulates ongoing innovation. Piracy hampers the plant breeding sector to use its full potential as the breeder looses significant revenues. Furthermore, it impacts other, honest, producers negatively, who grow the same variety legally with higher costs.

Also, consumers are harmed by piracy, due to the fact, that, as breeder’s incentives for developing new varieties are impaired, consumer’s choice in the longer term will be limited to a smaller number of new varieties.

Finally, practice shows that the production, use and trading of illegal products is an important source for financing organised crime often violating criminal laws, and also employment and environmental laws. Moreover, it elicits tax crimes and fraud against bona fide customers. Furthermore, existing (criminal) networks are regularly found to be used for smuggling and money-laundering using the profits for other forms of organised crime.
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