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Media release December 02, 2003

organicXseeds: FiBL database for organic seeds to be used across Europe from 2004

From January 2004 the organicXseeds internet database set up by FiBL, the Swiss Research Institute of Organic Agriculture, will be the official database for organic seeds and vegetative propagating material in Germany. This is in implementation of an EU Regulation which requires all Member States to establish databases for organic seed from 1 January 2004 in order to render the supply situation more transparent.

Logo organicXseeds

Organic farmers and growers must use organically grown seeds and vegetative propagating material, provided this is available in the marketplace. This condition is already part of the organic standards worldwide. From 1 January 2004 the procedures for the approval of derogations from this rule will be tightened within the EU and Switzerland. Organic seeds and vegetative propagating material must be used if an official database shows that the relevant variety or a comparable variety is available. It is only when the market supply for suitable seeds or vegetative propagating material has been exhausted that a farmer can be given approval to use conventional seeds or propagating material.

The organicXseeds database as set up and maintained by FiBL allows producers as well as the seed trade to gain quick and up-to-date access to information on the market situation in Europe. At the same time it allows plant breeders and seed growers to find buyers for their products.

The new regulation is a further step towards the full-coverage supply of organically grown seed and it is also a signal to plant breeders and seed growers to extend their activities in this field.

In Switzerland the organicXseeds database will become the key instrument in implementing the new seed rules in organic farming, for both the BIO SUISSE label organization and the Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture. In Germany all the federal states will designate organicXseeds as their official database which will display the available supply of organic seeds and vegetative propagating material. They thus implement EU Regulation 1452/2003 which requires all Member States to establish databases for organic seed from 1 January 2004 in order to render the supply situation more transparent.

The supply situation as tracked in organicXseeds is also the basis for granting derogations in other EU Member States such as Belgium, Great Britain, and Luxembourg. Other countries have also shown interest.

Further information on organicXseeds

Contact at FiBL Frick:
Andreas Thommen
Forschungsinstitut für biologischen Landbau FiBL
Ackerstrasse, CH-5070 Frick
Tel.: +41 (0)62 865-7208
Fax +41 (0)62 86-7273

Contact at FiBL Berlin e.V.:
Dr. Klaus-Peter Wilbois
Forschungsinstitut für biologischen Landbau FiBL
FiBL Berlin e.V. Geschäftsstelle Frankfurt
Galvanistr. 28, 60486 Frankfurt am Main
Telephone +49 (0)69 7137699-76
Fax +49 (0)69 7137699-9

Database homepage: www.organicxseeds.com

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