The $867 billion Farm Bill approved by Congress on Dec. 12 includes an update to the U.S. Plant Variety Protection Act (PVPA) that will protect and encourage floriculture innovation. The bill also strengthens the Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) and includes provisions that encourage more data-based analysis in pesticide registration decisions.
The news is a significant victory for the Society of American Florists, along with AmericanHort and the American Seed Trade Association. The groups have lobbied together for language to amend the PVPA, a 1970 law enacted to protect the intellectual property of breeders of certain agricultural products, including some flower varieties.
“The Farm Bill has amended the PVPA to protect asexual reproduction,” explained Shawn McBurney, SAF’s senior director of government relations. “Essentially derived varieties, or EDVs, obtained from asexually reproduced plants that can be brought to market very quickly will now be protected by law.”