Oat Workers Code of Ethics for Germplasm Exchange
In past decades, oat workers worldwide
have generously shared their oat germplasm with colleagues to enhance oat
breeding and research. However, plant variety protection and patent mechanisms
focus attention on proprietary rights afforded developers/owners of germplasm
materials. The purpose of this code is to encourage the continued exchange
of oat germplasm by recognizing these rights and by codifying the obligations
of persons receiving unreleased oat germplasm. This following code
was approved by the members of the American Oat Workers Conference, Minneapolis,
Minnesota on June 22, 1994.
For further information please contact Dr. Deon Stuthman, Department
of Agronomy and Plant Genetics, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108
The originating breeder, station, or company
has property rights to unreleased oat germplasm such as pure lines, early
generation lines or populations, bulk populations, breeding stocks, or
genetic stocks. These rights are not waived with the distribution of seeds
or plants of any of these unreleased materials. In this context, "released"
materials include named cultivars or breeding or genetic stocks described
in an official statement of release.
The owner/breeder, in distributing seeds or
plant materials of unreleased oat germplasm, grants permission for their
use: (1) in performance tests under the recipient's control, such as the
USDA Uniform Early and Uniform Midseason Oat Performance Nurseries, the
Eastern or Western Canadian Cooperative Pre-registration Trials, or any
national or International oat disease nurseries; and (2) as parents for
making crosses for use in basic research or for selection leading to the
development of cultivars. Uses of unreleased germplasm for which written
approval from the owner/breeder is required include: selecting from the
stock; induction of mutations through tissue culture or other means; insertion
of recombinant DNA; use in backcrosses for addition of a gene(s) controlling
a specific trait; testing in outlying nurseries not coordinated by USDA
or Agriculture Canada; use as parents in commercial F1 hybrids
or as components in synthetic or multiline cultivars; or seed increase
and release as a cultivar.
The recipient of unreleased seeds or plant
material shall make no secondary distribution of the germplasm without
the permission of the owner/breeder.
The recipient of unreleased materials shall
take precautions to prevent unauthorized transfer or theft of seed of these
materials from nurseries or seed inventories.
The owner/breeder of unreleased oat germplasm
stocks may waive, in writing, any of the above restrictions, or may impose
Retention and use of the germplasm accompanying
this statement indicates your agreement with the policies set forth in
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