Re: Breeders' Rights
The sky is falling! The sky is falling!
Well, I'm probably going to get everyone pissed off at me again, but
that's never slowed me down before so here we go...
Bill Meyer, you're talking nonsense again.
Bill Meyer wrote:
The system as it has been existing so far is falling apart.
I see absolutely no evidence that there ever was a system or that anything
is falling apart. Things change and we have to adjust to the changes.
Don't forget that the "almost anyone" can be the breeder, too.
anyone can afford to either TC a plant, BAP it, or pay to have it done
(about $300 for 100 TC liners).
Once you sell it the first time, one of
First of all, I'm not sure that your theory that the market of high end
OS plants is dead. I offered Satisfaction OS for $75 in my catalog
this year, the 6th year I've had it listed I think, along with tc plants
at $35. I had no problem selling all the OS plants I had available.
If I didn't have the tc plants to sell also, that would have been the end
of it. Personally, I don't think I would pay much more for OS plants,
but some people don't like tc and if they want the few OS plants available,
they have to pay for them. Their choice.
those buyers can have plenty for sale within a year to undercut you
destroy your ability to make money on your own plant. This is destroying
high end of the market, where you could sell a few of your OS plants
$100 or more.
I've heard more and more of these collectors say
that they are
When I introduced Satisfaction at $200, I did so because I only had a few
plants to sell. It was very difficult to find anyone to do tc privately
then. There was no trick involved, there just wasn't any way I could make
enough plants to sell them at a reasonable price. The day of
the $200 introduction may be gone, but now a breeder can spend spend a
few hundred dollars, have 100 or more plants to sell before anyone else
has even seen the plant, price it at a reasonable level, sell a bunch of
them because it's not outrageously expensive, do it again next year while
all these "pirates" are getting it tc'd, and keep selling it for years
after that. Just because a plant is in tc doesn't mean you can't
sell it any more. Sergeant Pepper has been in tc for years and I
still sell plenty of the OS for $30 each. I just got my first shipment
of tc plants because I can't grow enough OS to keep up.
starting to feel foolish paying that kind of money for something that
can buy for $20 next year. Some of them even say that they do it now
support the hybridizers, that if it wasn't for that reason they would
for them to get cheaper. In time, with things going the way they are,
won't be able to do what he did with 'Satisfaction', because the only
left willing to pay $200 for it will be those who want to market it
Just because things have changed doesn't mean we can't adjust to the
change and still sell our plants. It just means that people don't
have to pay $200 to get a good new plant anymore. Instead of selling
one for $200, sell four for $50, or maybe five. Thanks to the tc
labs, you don't have to be afraid of someone else flooding the market with
reasonably priced plants, you can do it yourself.
I think the main reason that the days of the $200 plant are gone, is
because it's no longer a fair price. When you could only make a few
plants a year, then there was a reason to charge a lot for them.
No anyone, including you, can have plants produced in quantity, quickly
and cheaply, and it's time to charge a reasonable price for them.
Is $50 reasonable for a new plant? Who knows. The customers get to
decide that. Some would probably rather wait three years and hope
to get it for $25, others will be willing to pay more to get it sooner.
How do we go about forcing nurseries to make legally binding agreements
with hybridizers? You patent the plant. And while I've not done it,
I don't think you have to pay anything like $6000, especially if your bright
enough to go to the Patent Office site, read someone else's patent application,
and do the paperwork yourself. It may be harder than it looks, but
it didn't seem that complicated to me. If you want to find an easier
way, you have to change the law. That'll happen.
I don't see what's
wrong with a change to a system where a small
percentage goes to the hybridizer and nurseries must make legally binding
arrangements with the hybridizer to sell the plant.
The end result would be
Whoops, I see that's actually what you are suggesting. My guess is
that Congress will probably hop right on it.
slightly higher prices for hostas (say 5%), with that 5% going to the
originator. Of course sellers of a product would prefer to keep all
profits themselves. Who wouldn't. What I'm suggesting is parity between
producers of plants and those who propagate and sell them. Before there
unions, employers did whatever they felt like. They got so out of hand
their behavior that unions formed to balance the situation out. Now
sides must negotiate fair agreements. That's what the Breeders' Rights
bring to the situation-------fair agreements worked out between both
Now, mostly there are no agreements, or there are
some which could
I'm sure that very few hybridizers think they are getting a fair share.
But that's how it works. If you don't think you're getting what it's
worth, you find someone else to deal with who will give you a better deal.
If you can't find anyone, then maybe it's not really worth that much.
One thing you have to remember is that the person who is going to do all
the work of growing and selling your plant for you probably isn't going
to do it unless there is a profit involved. And the kicker is that
if the grower can choose another variety and make just as much without
sharing it, there is no incentive.
be a lot better for the hybridizers. How many hybridizers feel that
they got a fair percentage of the profits made selling their plants?
Especially those who do not have their own nurseries?
Let's say you have a great plant and offer it to a potential parter
as follows: "I have a great plant and if you grow it and sell it
and share the proceeds with me, you can make a larger profit. If
not, I'll deal with someone else and they will make the profit and you
won't." What happens next, I think, depends on how great the plant