Kansas PVP Act Violator Settles with Syngenta

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Syngenta reports it reached a settlement with Kyle Awalt of Belleville, Kansas, in response to his Plant Variety Protection (PVP) Act violation. Awalt admitted to offering for sale non-certified federally protected AgriPro SY Monument and SY Wolf wheat seed.

Under the PVP Act, producers and others may not offer or sell uncertified protected wheat seed. The law allows for legal action against all parties involved in transactions that violate the law, potentially including the seller, the buyer, the cleaner, grain elevators and any other parties. The PVP Act entitles owners of PVP-protected varieties to obtain injunctions, monetary damages and reimbursement of attorneys’ fees, among other remedies, against individuals selling its non-certified wheat seed.

The law protects all wheat industry participants. Growers who need innovation and genetic providers that invest in developing new wheat varieties operate under the assumption that their long-term investment will be protected by the PVP Act. Illegal sales of varieties reduces available investment needed for developing new and improved varieties. New genetics benefit farmers, the agriculture industry and consumers.

“It is important not just for the seed associates and producers, but the industry as a whole, to follow the law and buy certified seed legally,” says Darcy Pawlik, product marketing lead, DFC and cereals for Syngenta. “Preventing the illegal use of federally protected seed and genetics allows us to continue investing in research, make improvements and keep offering high-quality, high-performing wheat varieties.”

SY Wolf is one of several varieties of PVP-protected wheat marketed by Syngenta under its AgriPro seed brand in Kansas and surrounding areas. SY Monument was released in 2015 and is gaining favor from farmers due to good disease resistance and yield.

Syngenta, along with several public and private plant breeders, will continue protecting its intellectual property investment and unique wheat genetics through court action if needed. Syngenta is a sponsor, along with many other institutions, of a strong educational campaign promoting continued wheat research through supporting a wheat industry cooperative known as the Farmers’ Yield Initiative (FYI).

FYI is a coalition of public and private organizations dedicated to the education of the benefits of wheat research. Another component of education is enforcement of PVP laws. With this educational campaign, Syngenta hopes to inform producers and sellers of the importance of wheat seed certification and the value it adds to the farming community through investment and research. Farmers suspecting a PVP violation with non-certified seed sales may email tips to tips@farmersyieldinitiative.com or phone in tips with complete confidentiality to FYI at (877) 482-5907.

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