Today, only a handful of companies account for most of the world’s commercial breeding and seed sales. Increasingly, patenting and restrictive contracts are used to enhance the power and control of these companies over the seeds and the farmers that feed the world.
Patented and protected seeds cannot be saved, replanted, or shared by farmers and gardeners. And because there is no research exemption for patented material, plant breeders at universities and small seed companies cannot use patented seed to create the new crop varieties that should be the foundation of a just and sustainable agriculture.
Inspired by the free and open source software movement that has provided alternatives to proprietary software, OSSI was created to free the seed – to make sure that the genes in at least some seed can never be locked away from use by intellectual property rights.
OSSI Pledged Varieties
Seed Company Partners
We’re working hard to FREE THE SEED! We greatly appreciate your support — it helps us to increase the number OSSI-Pledged varieties that are free of intellectual property restrictions now and into the future.
Your support is critical to keeping our operations running. Even a small donation goes a long way! OSSI is a 501(c)3 non-profit and donations are tax deductible within the guidelines of U.S. law. If you prefer not to donate online, you can always send a check made out to the Open Source Seed Initiative, PO Box 5664, Madison WI 53705 – 0664.