PVR Law Reform

New Zealand's Z Plant Vasreity Rights Law (PVR) law is based upon a UPOV (International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants) convention, and we're still operating under a 1978 convention. It's been superseded by a 1991 convention, one that gives breeder far more protection. Around the world more and more jurisdictions have adopted UPOV91, including many of NZ's significant trading partners.

In July 2014, the Plant Breeders Research Association, the Grain & Seed Trade Association, NZPPI and cut flower growers began a collaboration to advocate for UPOV91’s adoption.

The benefits of the UPOV91 Convention include far stronger rights for breeders – and consequently their agents and licensees.  For example:

  • Extended breeder rights over the use of plant material
  • Recognition of Essentially Derived Varieties 

A number of interested parties met in August 2015 and a Steering Group (Thomas Chin – NZPBRA, Wendy Cashmore – PFR, Bruno Simpson – Wiamea, Andy Warren – Bloomz, Ian Gear and John Liddle - NZPPI) was formed. The latter has met several times, developed draft policy and discussed reform with MBIE and met with Minister Goldsmith..

Late in 2016 the Government committed to PVR Act reform, a process that will see work through 2017 and beyond.

Information below records progress through several milestones.