Patent on lettuce for hot climate

Salat KeimungIn 2018 the European Patent Office granted a patent on lettuce, that can be grown under hot climate conditions, to the Dutch company Rijk Zwaan Zaadteelt (EP2966992). The trait - which is also known from wild lettuce species - is supposed to be helpful in adaption to climate change.

The lettuce seeds are derived from conventional breeding without any involvement of genetic engineering. According to the text of the patent the lettuce seeds, the plants and all its offspring showing the desired traits are covered by the patent.

In the opinion of No Patents on Seeds! the patent violates the prohibition of patents on plants and on conventional breeding methods. No Patents on Seeds!, therefore, filed an opposition against this patent on lettuce on 17th of February 2019. A hearing is scheduled for 7 February 2024.

Text of the patent

The patent on the website of the European Patent Office

Press release of No Patents on Seeds! Opposition against patent on lettuce (6th March 2019)

Reasons for the opposition against patent on lettuce