SEED VALUE CREATION

Updated: March 13, 2019

About Seed Value Creation

Canada’s public breeders have done well with what they’ve been given, but could do much more with greater resources. Our global competitors have modernized their breeding systems, some quarter a century ago. So, Canada is behind in establishing processes to address a serious lack of investment and competition. Increased investment, innovation, collaboration and competition would result from a modernized funding model.

The Issues

Our current public breeding program is under resourced, with royalties only covering 10-20% of true costs. That makes wheat producers vulnerable.

A second issue is the lack of private breeding investment.

Our Position

The Western Canadian Wheat Growers want investments in Canada, so the latest ag seed technology can help farmers compete in an increasingly competitive global market. Breeders, whether public or private, small or large, should be encouraged and rewarded for investing to bring new seed technology to Canada.

The Wheat Growers support a royalty system, whether “trailing” or “end point”, that is effective in propping up public programs, attracts private investors, and is administratively efficient. Sharing production risks, and the preservation of a quality assured seed production system, are important considerations. Retaining the ability to use older varieties and farm saved seed is critical and works with either Grains Round Table proposed solution.

Having a national system for all crops should not delay the implementation of a solution for crops as critical to the Canadian economy as wheat and barley.

The Wheat Growers is using consultations to detail out implementation specifics before coming forward with a preferred royalty scheme by 2019 spring seeding.

What We Are Doing

Proposed Seed Variety Use Agreement: Implementing Royalties for Farm-saved Seed

“Farmers aren’t against paying for a variety of research,” says Wheat Growers' Chair Jim Wickett. “As long as we get a product that is better than what we currently have.”

Seed Value Creation Consultation

CALGARY, AB: The Western Canadian Wheat Growers call for continued consultation around the issue of Seed Value Creation. Throughout the regional meetings being held across the prairies, Wheat Grower Directors have actively contributed to the discussions. “The challenge is that public breeding costs are not being covered. It is treated as a subsidized public good. […]

Seed royalty proposal divides farmers

The wheat growers association wants to wait till the end of the consultation process before stating its preferred choice, but added it supports the continuation of public breeding programs and believes a new royalty collection system would contribute to their sustainability.

More groups weigh in on seed royalty proposal

The Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association says it’s in favour of paying royalties on farm-saved seed if it means better seed products for prairie farmers. “As farmers, we don’t feel the status quo is good enough…,” said WCWGA president Levi Wood.

Seed Value Creation is Long Overdue

OTTAWA, ON: The Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association firmly supports efforts to create value in the seed sector and reward those investing in breeding. “Why wouldn’t farmers want both public and private breeders to develop new wheat varieties to provide more technology and choice?” says Gunter Jochum, Manitoba farmer, Director of the Wheat Growers, and […]

Wheat Growers Support Move to Modernize Seed Regulations

CALGARY, AB: The Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association supports today’s announcement by the federal government that it intends to modernize Canada’s seed regulations by ratifying the 1991 international convention governing the sale and use of new plant varieties. The move is expected to encourage more international breeders to develop new seed varieties for the Canadian market. Canada is […]

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