Plant Varieties

What are they?

Plant Varieties are an industrial property modality which is in charge of the protection of the inventions applied to the vegetable environment.


According to Regulation (CE) N. 2100/94, plant variety shall be:

  1. Distinct
  2. Homogeneous
  3. Stable
  4. New


Protecting plant varieties grants their creators or developers an exclusive manufacturing, reproduction, sale or utilization period.

Once the protection is awarded, the holder of the creator rights has the right to prevent the following acts, if done without its consent:

  1. Production or reproduction (multiplication) ;
  2. Conditioning for propagation purposes;
  3. Sale or another type of commercialization;
  4. Export/Import;
  5. Storing for any of the above mentioned purposes.


To make a registry request for a plant variety it is necessary to file an application for registration on the National Varieties Catalogue (NVC).

This is followed by the trial phase, namely of distinction, homogeneity and stability (DHE), analysis and/or tests according with the applicable exam protocol. DGAV/Plant Health Services Board (DSSV) follows up the trial for its assessment.

Upon the trial’s conclusion, the applicant shall submit to DGAV/DSSV through mail or electronic mail the required documentation.

DGAV will proceed to evaluate the sent documentation and decide on the registration, or not, of the variety on the NVC, bearing in mind the principles of distinction, homogeneity and stability applied to each plant species, the existence of maintenance selection of the variety and the community norms applicable to the designations of the plant varieties.

The decision is taken at the latest on the 31st of January of the year after the presentation of the final completed dossier.


The plant variety community protection is effective until the end of the 25th civil year or, in the case of vines and of special trees’ species, until the end of the 30th civil year, subsequent to the year of its granting.

Once the holder’s right ends, the plant variety becomes public domain.