The information reported on the product label and the seed certification label must comply with seed laws and the truth in marketing requirements of trade practice laws. The legal requirements vary from one country to another and, in some countries, among states or provinces. Typically, the label information includes the seed lot number, which enables tracking of the seed through the distribution chain and back to the seed producer; the kind/species, cultivar name, and origin of production; percentages of germination, pure seed, inert matter, other crop seed, and weed seed; percentage of noxious weed seeds if found; test date of seed, year of production, expiration date of valid certification, details of treatments applied to seed, and relevant safety warnings to users; the name and address of the wholesaler, manufacturer, or seed producer; and details and limitations of guarantees, and arbitration proceedings.

In the case of forage tall fescue seed containing a nontoxic endophyte, the label also may contain information about the minimum percentage of seeds infected with the nontoxic endophyte, and a recommended date before when the seed product should be planted (Fig. 25-1). In addition, the package may record several guidelines for users: (i) site selection, choice of ground and soils suitable for forage tall fescue; (ii) use of a soil test to determine recommended fertilizer applications; (iii) operations to remove existing vegetation and prepare ground for planting forage tall fescue seed; (iv) seeding rates for planting in both cultivated and no-till operations; (v) recommended companion species, namely legumes; (vi) recommended planting dates; and (vii) operations to manage seedling and mature forage tall fescue plants.

If the package label does not include the above information, purchasers are advised to request the missing information from their seed supplier or extension adviser.

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Fig. 25-1. A field of ‘Jesup' tall fescue containing an experimental nontoxic endophyte, planted on 29 Aug. 2002, is ready for seed harvest near Salem, OR, on 3 June 2005, with seedsmen Tim Thompson (left) and Trevor Abbott (right). (Photo courtesy of Tony Stratton.)


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