Demeter Frøavl






Regelverk og anbefalinger for biologisk-dynamisk




Gjeldende fra 01.01.2019





3.12 Biodynamic plant breeding


3.12.1 Scope of applicability and fundamentals


The standards for Biodynamic plant breeding were developed primarily by the Association of Biodynamic Plant Breeders (Assoziation biologisch-dynamischer Pflanzenzüchter, ABDP). These standards lay the foundation for the agreement between the users of the phrase “Biodynamically bred plant varieties” and the respective organization responsible for issuing contracts to Biodynamic plant breeders and regulating the use of the above phrase for labelling their products. For details concerning the labelling of Biodynamically bred plant varieties please see the labelling section of this standard.

The intention of the Biodynamic plant breeding standard is to provide a standardized set of criteria for identifying and labelling Biodynamically bred plant varieties. This makes it possible to differentiate Biodynamically bred varieties from other varieties that do not meet the standard’s criteria. While the Demeter logo indicates that plants or plant products were produced on a Demeter certified farm, it does not currently identify the origin of the seed used to grow the plants. The Biodynamic plant breeding standard aims to draw special attention to the breeding background of the plants by labelling Biodynamically bred plant varieties as such.


3.12.2 General requirements for breeding new varieties


– Breeding must take place on Demeter certified fields or otherwise appropriate plant breeding facilities. If this is not possible, breeding can take place under the conditions outlined below.

– If breeding takes place on certified organic fields, the Biodynamic preparations must be applied as follows: minimum one annual crop-appropriate application of horn manure and horn silica preparations, as well as the application of Biodynamically prepared compost or, if not available, cow pat pit (CPP) preparation on all fields. These requirements are to be agreed upon in writing with the certified organic farm, for e.g. with a crop management contract.

– The farm where the breeding takes place as well as the relevant documentation of all breeding activities must be accessible and available for a Demeter inspection at all times.

– The development of a new variety is initiated either via intentional or incidental cross- pollination or the mutation of heritable traits and subsequent selection. A minimum of four years of selective breeding under Biodynamic conditions, as described in Paragraph 1 and 2, is essential.

– The following breeding methods are not permitted:

  • All methods not permitted under the IFOAM standards
  • Hybrid breeding, regardless of production method
  • Double haploidy or polyploidization
  • Plants produced using cytoplast or protoplast fusion

– The use of hybrids or double haploid varieties as parent lines for the development of new, Biodynamically bred varieties is permitted.

– In order to be recognized as a registered plant variety, it is essential that all newly developed Biodynamic varieties are registered with the responsible patent office. Only then can the variety (seed) be sold to others.

  • In case of a closed production system, the patenting or registration of a new Biodynamic variety may not be relevant to the breeder. The respective organization can nevertheless issue an official recognition of the variety as a “Biodynamically bred plant variety”. To receive recognition, an application can be submitted demonstrating that the variety meets the necessary degree of differentiation from other varieties of the same species according to relevant seed and plant breeding or patenting regulations.


3.12.3 Requirements for conservation breeding


Conservation breeding inherently takes place on certified Biodynamic farms, or, as a minimum requirement, on farms adhering to the stipulations outlined in Paragraph 3.12.3, article 2, General Requirements for Breeding New Varieties.


3.12.4 Special documentation requirements


The first delivery of seed to the farm must be documented. (Delivery slip or shipping invoice/receipt/supplier/quantity/treatments/genetic modification risk analysis)

A crop plan must show which fields were used for growing and selecting the variety in question. The parent lines of the selected plants must be traceable using invoices or other supporting documents.

The sale of seed must be documented via a delivery order invoice as required for EU organic inspections. These invoices must state the name of the variety/lot/quantity/treatment of seed/recipient

The required documentation makes it possible to track the variety within the crop rotation and trace the development of the variety over the course of multiple generations.


3.12.5 Transparency guidelines for plant breeding


The development history of a variety includes the following information:

– Variety, cultivar, variety denomination, name of breeder, date, breeding aims

– Source of genetic (parent) material for breeding, description, supplier, first cultivation date, indication whether the parent material is a result of cross-breeding

– Under which conditions was or is the variety cultivated and selected? State location and cultivation methods.

– What selections methods are/were used? Mass selection (positive or negative): how many individuals from a total of how many are chosen? In case of single plant selection, are plants separated and grown out/reviewed according to individual traits or is a mixture of the prepared seed grown out (Pedigree method versus bulk-population method)? Was the procedure changed at any point over the generations? Were there times during the selection period where unique selection criteria were applied? Were specific testing methods used to support the selection process? Under which conditions did additional trials take place? Are there specific requirements that needed to be fulfilled when the variety was introduced for wider use?

– When was the variety registered with the responsible patent office?

– Description of the process of seed propagation used to produce seed for sale and distribution.

– A current description of the variety: typical characteristics, recommended cultivation methods and other practical guidelines for working with the variety, results of quality analyses.