14 July 1995

Breeders meet to set royalty rates

PLANT breeders met on Monday to agree proposals for farm-saved seed royalty rates.

The British Society of Plant Breeders refused to release details of the board meeting until next Monday, when a letter will be sent to farmers and processors.

A BSPB spokesman said there were no plans to discuss the issue with the NFU. He said informal talks had been held at Cereals 95 and at Velcourt and the two sides were not able to reach an agreement.

He refused to confirm that the rate, which Brussels has agreed must be "sensibly lower" than that for certified seed, will be phased in over three years starting at 60% of the C2 level. He suggested the figure would be lower.

Incoming BSPB chief executive Roger Turner has said 50% will be the start rate, moving to 60% in 1996 with a review in 1997 (Arable, July 7).