Plant patents are issued for new varieties of asexually reproduced plants. A plant patent may be granted to anyone who invents or discovers and asexually reproduces any distinct and new variety of plant. Plant Patents are issued for 20 years. A plant patent always begins with the letter PP, such as PP22,407.
To be patentable, it is also required:
- "That the plant was invented or discovered and, if discovered, that the discovery was made in a cultivated area.
- That the plant is not a plant which is excluded by statute, where the part of the plant used for asexual reproduction is not a tuber food part, as with potato or Jerusalem artichoke.
- That the person or persons filing the application are those who actually invented the claimed plant; i.e., discovered or developed and identified or isolated the plant, and asexually reproduced the plant.
- That the plant has not been sold or released in the United States of America more than one year prior to the date of the application.
- That the plant has not been enabled to the public, i.e., by description in a printed publication in this country more than one year before the application for patent with an offer to sale; or by release or sale of the plant more than one year prior to application for patent.
- That the plant be shown to differ from known, related plants by at least one distinguishing characteristic, which is more than a difference caused by growing conditions or fertility levels, etc.
- The invention would not have been obvious to one skilled in the art at the time of invention by applicant."
- For more detailed information about plant patents, see the USPTO's General Information about 35 U.S.C. 161 Plant Patents
- See also Can IP rights protect plants?
Plant Patent Information BooksIntellectual Property Law of Plants
Seed Wars: Cases and Materials on Intellectual Property and Plant Genetic Resources