The french and UE official catalogues
The official catalogue of species and varieties set up on the initiative of the Comité Technique Permanent de la Sélection des plantes cultivées (the Permanent Technical Committee for plant breeding - C.T.P.S.) under the auspices of the Ministry of Agriculture, gives for the species mentioned in it, a list of the varieties or varietal types whose seeds or plants may be sold in France.
The C.T.P.S. is the body responsible for making proposals to the Ministery of Agriculture on the conditions and methods for the testing of each species of cultivated plant before it can be included in the catalogue.
The Groupe d'Etude et de Contrôle des Variétés et des Semences (the Group for Testing and Control of Varieties and Seeds - GEVES) has responsibility for the testing.
The testing of potatoes is carried out by GEVES, the National Institute for Agronomic Research (INRA), the French Technical institut for Potato (ARVALIS-Institut du végétal). and several professional organisations. The observations and results are analysed by GEVES and INRA at the Station d'Amélioration de la Pomme de terre et des Plantes à bulbes (National Center for Potato Breeding) in 29260 Ploudaniel, Finistère, France.
To be included in the catalogue, a variety must meet the requirements :
- Of Distinctness, Uniformity, Stability (D.U.S.) which guarantee that the varieties can be identified during their multiplication, production and sale ;
- Of their Agronomic and technological worth (Value for cultivation and use - V.C.U)
Their performance is evaluated by comparing them with control varieties, through experiments which are run over a 2 years period in the frame of multilocal net.
The results for their worth for cultivation and use are recorded as scores (on a scale from 1 to 9), and/or bonus and penalties. These make up a total score which is compared with the "threshold" value.
The varieties which meet or overcome this threshold have to undergo technical expertise and then the C.T.P.S recommends them to the French Ministry of Agriculture for inclusion in the catalogue.
Varieties are included in A list when they have successfully passed the D.U.S. and V.C.U. tests
The varieties included in B list must have successfully passed the D.U.S tests. They may be propagated in France but may not be sold in the European Union.
Varieties submitted by breeders from any country may be tested by GEVES for a registration in the French catalogue. Seed potatoes brought into the experimental network are subject to the plant health regulations in force.
Inclusion in the French catalogue is valid for an initial period of 10 years, after which a variety may be included for a further period of 5 years or cancelled, depending on its economic importance.
Further information is available on the website: www.geves.fr