Innovation, Exclusion and Commodification of Plant Types: A Social and Philosophical Investigation of Plant Variety Rights in Australia

Andrew Alexandra, Jadran Lee, Frank Vanclay

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    Abstract

    Plant Variety/Breeder's Rights legislation, allowing ownership of plant types, was introduced into Australia in the 19805. The most influential arguments in favour of the controversial legislation were consequentialist in nature. In effect, it was asserted that the benefits, especially the economic benefits, of the introduction of property rights over plant varieties would more than outweigh whatever costs there would be in taking such a step, However. despite the importance of the legislation there has been very little investigation into its actual effects. In this paper we report views about these effects gained through interviews with a range of stakeholders, and briefly outline some of the implications of this information. While the new system is now entrenched, our research provides reasons to believe that government and growers' bodies should remain actively involved in facilitating, funding and directing Australian plant breeding.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)46-56
    Number of pages11
    JournalRural Society
    Volume14
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2004

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