Recent developments in intellectual property and power in the private sector related to food and agriculture
The legal protection of intellectual property (IP) has allowed private persons and enterprises to assert exclusive rights in relation to certain agricultural innovations. Whether through the protection of breeding innovations under plant variety rights protection laws or through the patenting of genes and gene fragments, the increasing involvement of IPRs in agriculture has effected a shift of agricultural research from public to private institutions. This article examines the changes in the international IP landscape which has facilitated these developments and looks at the impacts of modern IP developments upon agricultural research and farmers. It concludes with a consideration of IP liability issues arising from the development of GM agriculture.
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