Is accepting a fixed-price deal for a new plant a good idea?

In recent weeks, we’ve seen several advertisements (from one major British garden retailer in particular) suggesting that breeders/finders of new plants could “earn £500 for your new plant”. And, frankly, we’re horrified.

Never sign over the rights to your new plant for a fixed-price deal like this (unless the fixed price has a lot more zeros on the end!). The lifetime potential income from even a modestly successful plant variety that is eligible for Plant Variety Rights will be many times the sum offered.

Consider this: typically, offers of this nature are made by a single grower. They will wish to exploit your variety for profit for many years in their market. In addition, they will licence the plant to growers in other markets (on the Continent, in the US, in Australia, etc) and derive income from those markets. And each of these growers may sell thousands, tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of your plant each year. Even with a low royalty of three or four pence, that adds up to a lot more than £500!

So, please protect your own interests in your variety – it is, after all, your property and should remain so. Engage the services of an agent, like PFE, who will work to protect your interests and maximise your income potential whilst the plant remains entirely, 100%, your property.

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