Public cultivars have the following characteristics:

1.      They are freely available to all producers and users.

2.      They can be supplied as either certified or noncertified seed.

3.      Some cultivars may be protected by Plant Variety Protection, Plant Variety Rights, and Plant Breeders' Rights.

4.      Some cultivars may involve payment of a royalty to the owner.

5.      End users (livestock and pasture owners, managers, and producers) typically are permitted to produce, retain, and sell seed from the public cultivars.

6.      Proliferation of public cultivars discourages investment by the private sector.

7.      The free access to public cultivars and uncontrolled seed production can lead to lowering of seed quality standards and inappropriate use of under-grade seed.

8.      Numerous public cultivars have been developed without a commercial focus and without being commercialized.


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