Dominican farmers could face problems with a new government agency the “National Seeds Office”
Senator Amilcar Romero is backing a New Seed Bill that is currently awaiting approval in the Deputies’ Chamber. The bill seeks to establish strict controls over the production, use and marketing of seeds, and involves the creation of a new government agency, called the “National Seeds Office.”
According to the proposed bill farmers must only use seeds that are from registered crops and they can no longer recycle and process their own seeds.
The bill will also penalize the production, harvesting and sale of unregistered seeds, with penalties including sanctions, closures and seed confiscation.
Strong penalties in the shape of fines equivalent to 250 minimum wages and a maximum two year jail term will be imposed on farmers who do not comply and any who produce unregistered seeds.
This Seed Bill does appear to take account of the fact that most of the Dominican agricultural market is informal, and the law excludes poor and informal farmers.
If approved, the bill would place most farmers outside of the law, and would increase the influence of large enterprises over the agricultural market, affecting the food market as a whole, not just the rural economy.
Source: DR1, http://www.antillean.org/
April 21, 2015
Category: DR News |