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Robert J. Jondle

An overview of current legal options for the protection of plant innovations is presented. Plant protection options vary from country to country, depending on the type of plant invention-e.g., a new biotechnology method, a gene, plant cultivar, or hybrid. Plant science, plant breeding, and biotechnology are interconnected and international in scope. Therefore, it is important to consider international plant protection options available for plant innovations.

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Robert J. Jondle

Intellectual property rights issues relating to horticultural species will be addressed. Some current industry concerns include: 1) importing cut flowers of protected plants which compete directly with the plant patent holder; 2) obtaining adequate protection for newly developed varieties; and 3) providing an incentive for private research to develop new varieties. Different forms of plant protection will be reviewed, including the Plant Patent Act, utility patents, breeder's rights, the Plant Variety Protection Act, contracts, licensing and trade secrets. The role that universities can play in assisting the horticultural industry will also be discussed.