52 / SEEDWORLD.COM JUNE 2018 LET’S SAY YOU just created a wonderful new variety after 10 years of crossing and selection, and now you want to protect that variety through plant breeders’ rights (PBR) in a number of countries. Until recently, you had to search for the different PBR application forms of the various countries, arrange some sort of translation of the forms, and often hire a local agent to file the application. Much of this cumbersome process is now history with the arrival of UPOV PRISMA. Seed World sat down with Ben Rivoire, technical/regional officer for UPOV, on the ben- efits of the new application tool. Seed World (SW): How did the PBR application tool (UPOV PRISMA) come about? Ben Rivoire (BR): The purpose of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) is to encourage the development of new varieties of plants by providing an effective system of protection. New plant varieties have always been a key means for farmers to improve their economic situa- tion and to deliver on food security to society as a whole. Today, with the challenges of climate change, urbanization and an increasing population, there is an acute need for an influx of new varieties. However, we recognize that without effective plant variety protection, breeders have limited possibilities to achieve a return on their investment. By making it easier for breeders to file PBR applications, farmers will have access to more varieties. SW: Why is UPOV PRISMA necessary? BR: For some time, it has been known that breeders have faced practical challenges in applying for PBR because the process was tedious and time-consuming. This was particularly the case for small- and medium-sized enterprises and for breeders in countries with less widespread languages. Furthermore, the administrative effort to make an application was the same for all countries, regardless of size. As an example, for countries with smaller markets, breeders cannot justify the investment in resources to seek protection. In the past, the tools to address those problems would have been too expensive and resource heavy to provide a cost-effective solution; however, recent HELPING BREEDERS MAKE VARIETIES MORE WIDELY AVAILABLE UPOV PRISMA is the new online PBR application tool. Marcel Bruins mbruins@issuesink.com The UPOV PRISMA team comprises Caroline Rovere, Hend Madhour, Ben Rivoire and Ariane Besse.