BREEDERS TRUST is an organisation of 12 potato breeding companies from Germany, the Netherlands, France, Scotland and Denmark. It concerns AGRICO, CYGNET, DANESPO, EUROPLANT, GERMICOPA, HZPC, INTERSEED, MEIJER POTATO, NORIKA, SCHAAP, SOLANA and STET. These companies are active in breeding and developing new potato varieties. BREEDERS TRUST has started its activities in 2008.

Since 2011, also 10 grass seed breeding companies have joined BREEDERS TRUST. It concerns: BARENBRUG,  DLF,  DSV,  GERMINAL,  RAGT, SAATZUCHT STEINACH, VANDINTER SEMO, STROETMANN AND RUDLOFF. These companies are active in breeding, producing and trading grass seeds and fodder crops.

Why BREEDERS TRUST was founded

Worldwide, copying of protected products is an increasing problem. Also in the potato and grass seed chains this regularly takes place. The participating companies noticed that they do miss a part of their income because license fees are not always paid and by unlawful trade in (protected) varieties. To give an example: to develop a new potato variety takes 10 years at minimum and costs at least € 3 million. The result is a new variety that has an added value in yield, health or quality. When a new variety is registered and Plant breeders’ Rights are obtained, there is a 30 years´ period of Plant Breeders Rights protection applicable and the owner has the right to ask for a license fee. Through this system the breeders can continue to breed and develop new varieties with better traits.



The Objectives of BREEDERS TRUST are:

  • To support its participating companies in the implementation and enforcement of their Plant Breeders’ Rights protection and reduce the illegal trade in plant propagation material.
  • To see that license fees are paid for the multiplication of varieties and that production and trade takes place within the applicable legislation.
  • Informing growers and supply chains concerning the risks of using uncertified grass seeds and seed potatoes and keeping them apprised of the rules applicable under EU legislation and Plant Breeders Rights protection.
  • To take legal actions, where necessary, against growers and other players in the market that break the law on purpose, thereby helping to ensure the continuity in the development of new varieties and a healthy sector in which production and trade takes place in a fair way.