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How do you protect your cannabis IP?

Breeders: how do you protect your genetics? Every new cultivar we create can be considered intellectual property (IP) and needs to be protected, right? Or should genetics be considered open-source and available to the world? What are your thoughts on protecting cannabis IP?

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@rflasch knows a great deal about this already. Laws were passed a long time ago. And patents are coming. My understanding is we cant patent anything because it public domain. when patents are allowed, you have to show a 10% difference from the previous plant i believe. then you can patent. That was my thought on who owns all back strains and crosses. the answer is we all do. and no one does. However of you want to patent a plant you must make it your own.

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Hi Grower Nick, You may remember that Alan at Strainly and me argued this very question in October of 2018 - it may be helpful for those interested in this topic to read some of what we said - I argued for patents, and Alan argued against patents.
Yours, Lindsay Moore

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Here is some more of the debate.
Lindsay Moore

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You can’t, it’s part if giving up your genetics regardless of plant species.
The grower is free to breed and do what they want.
The ultimate goal is to breed yourself and create your own F1 so you don’t pay for seeds.
If you sell me your seed, I’m free to hybridize and use your genetics to grow something better than what you gave me. Could be unintentional like Mother Nature doing her thing.
K

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The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
They’ll (patent attorneys) have to pry my genetics out of my cold dead paws.
I believe if you sell ‘my genetics’ as seed or weed, that you owe me compensation, if you use my genetics to make your own hybrids that are improvements, then go for it, I have no issues.
The ultimate goal for me is growing medicine that works for me.

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I advise all of you to stock up as much as possible very fast. Breed your own. Becareful posting pics or talking too much once patents come.

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aside from some craft strains meant to be smoked as flower (Heirloom) , I believe the future is about isolating terpenes, flavonoids and various cannabinoids separately and then blending for specific therapeutic results, that’s pharmacology and where the patent medicines are headed. It’s big tobacco and big alc that are concerned about your growing a stash in your backyard.

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hey Nick,
I am on these guys email list. they have top end environmental monitoring equipment.
here’s the link: [https://www.globalspec.com]
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Well yes and all these seed banks and forums are ripe targets for all home growers. Limiting exsposure is going to be huge. As it is my profile says “Hey come get me im right here” Money out of their pocket means Im the problem. They would rather lock me up for patent infringment.

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You won’t be able to do it, cause the us gov already has the patent for the entire species of cannabis. Branding is the closest. That’s what Berner is doing.

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You are only supposed to be able to get utility and plant patents on stable germ lines, i.e. inbred lines that are true breeding for many traits. I don’t know of many Cannabis cultivars that are patentable under this guideline alone. If it’s been sold to the public you only have a year to patent from the initial sale date so that excludes many stable germ lines, like Deep Chunk say, as it was much more common to line breed back in the day. You can’t patent anything that’s schedule 1 without a medical use clause so you’d also have to demonstrate that somehow. Additionally, you can’t trademark a schedule 1 substance so there’s really no other way to control the IP, like the name, of the Cannabis plant. This is for high THC/CBD cultivars of course, and excludes any variety with d9THC content below 0.3% and no CBD [edit: not 100 on CBD maybe someone with a better understanding of FD&C law could chime in]. You can create a lifestyle brand but good luck trying to enforce it on someone growing your cultivars as, again, the plant is schedule 1 so there’s nothing you can do in the courts that won’t risk your trademark as you’d have to admit that you’re trademark is really about the plant not clothes or whatever. This is the US, Canada I believe is much more open but that’s not my wheelhouse so I can’t really say. I do believe people should protect their IP, as with corn, tomatoes and every other unique plant cultivar, if you create something truly different you should have a few years to control it’s licensing etc to reap the years of effort required to stabilize the germline, although I think the current 15 year patent length is a bit stiffling to innovation.

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It started the top
Now it’s spiraling down
Works best when it’s lost
Digging underground

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The only way I can see a protecting your strain is to not sell your seeds keep your strain inhouse and protected

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I’m mean from certain scientific practices. It is potentially possible to make a plant that can’t be copied. On the same hand that’s also what them Fem seed thing is about. A breeder is ok with you running his stuff x ? Reason being is you will never have X back again in that form. But making a plant that genetically can’t be copied is something to consider. :dna:

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