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Organic seed

Organic farmers must, as a general rule, use organically produced seeds and vegetative propagation material. For many crop types a range of certified organic varieties is available to farmers. There is, for example, a wide spectrum of organically propagated cereal varieties. The availability of organic seed can be checked at the www.organicXseeds.com database.

The Bio Suisse Standards divide the entire range of seeds and vegetative propagation material into three tiers. For Levels 1 (organic=compulsory) and 2 (organic=the norm) a good selection of certified organic seed is available. An application for a derogation must be made for the use of non-organic seeds, seedlings or vegetative propagation material. In Switzerland, such applications must be made to the FiBL Biosaatgutstelle (organic seed bureau). For Level 3 plant reproductive material (organic=desirable) few, if any, organic cultivars are available. Therefore a general derogation for the use of non-organic plant reproductive material is in place.

Information on the crop types for which you must use organic plant reproductive material as well as information on how to apply for a derogation for using non-organic seeds and vegetative propagation material, if necessary, can be found at www.biosaatgut.bioaktuell.ch (in German).