The organisations behind No Patents On Seeds are especially concerned about increasing number of patents on plants, seeds and farm animals and their impact on farmers, breeders, innovation and biodiversity. These patents create new dependencies for farmers, breeders, food producers and consumers. These patents have to be regarded as misappropriation of basic resources in farm and food production and as general abuse of patent law. We call for an urgent re-think of European patent law in biotechnology and plant breeding and to support clear regulations that exclude from patentability processes for breeding, genetic material, plants and animals and food derived thereof.
Munich 16 October 2013.
In parallel to a meeting of the Administrative Council, the highest control institution of the European Patent Office (EPO), farmers and civil society groups are jointly protesting against patents on plants and animals. Activists are installing barriers outside the main building of the EPO in Munich where the meeting takes place today.
Today German Parliament will change German patent law to prohibit patents on plants and animals derived from conventional breeding. This is in line with demands from many civil society organisations which request changes in patent law to prevent patents such as the recently granted “patent on severed broccoli” from Monsanto (EP 1597965). Nevertheless the new patent law will still leave substantive loopholes for similar patents.
With my signature I demand the revocation of the EP 1597965 Monsanto patent on “severed broccoli”. It is a patent on plants, seed and harvest derived from conventional breeding. It violates the prohibition in European patent law that excludes patents on plant varieties as well as on conventional breeding.