Tokyo, Nov. 15 (Jiji Press)–An advisory panel to Japan’s agriculture ministry Friday proposed limiting the areas where domestically developed varieties of agricultural crops can be grown, in a bid to prevent them being taken out of the country.
The move comes after a series of cases in which national varieties, such as the high-quality Shine Muscat grape, were cultivated without permission in China and South Korea.
Under the current plant variety protection and seed law, varieties registered as intellectual property cannot be grown without approval, but taking them out of the country is possible.
The proposal seeks to address the situation by allowing developers of new varieties to limit cultivation areas to specific municipalities in Japan and obliging farmers wishing to grow new varieties to get permission from the developers.
Developers would be able to request injunctions if cultivating farmers commit any violations.
To implement the proposal, the ministry plans to submit a bill to revise the law to parliament early next year.
The ministry will continue not to put restrictions on the cultivation of varieties that are not registered, enabling them to be grown freely.