In this practice guideline
The duration of DUS Testing and fee requests
Standard length of testing
At the time of application or during the preliminary examination, the examiner will advise of the anticipated examination timeframe and the expected length of testing. For an ornamental species this is usually one growing season, for a fruit species often two and for agricultural or vegetable crops, two or more seasons. The trial details and anticipated testing timetable is set out based on known factors; such as the time of year an application is made, the availability of plant material and the requirements for growing plants in that genus. The cultivation of plants is subject to many variables, not all of which can be controlled or managed, and the timetable set will have provision for extension if necessary. For foreign bred varieties, without plant material in New Zealand at application, the testing timetable is not set out until plant material has been imported and released from quarantine.
Additional information regarding the availability of plant material is available in our technical guidance document on the availability and supply of plant material.
The prescribed trial or examination fee will be charged for each growing trial for annual species and each evaluation season for perennial species. If the standard evaluation period is two seasons then a fee will be charged for each season.
Additional testing due to growing trial deficiencies
Due to weather or unavoidable events, the growing of plants for testing purposes and the DUS evaluation can be disrupted and on occasion the results from such a disrupted trial are not adequate for a DUS decision. If the examiner is unable to make a DUS recommendation due to incomplete information directly caused by an unavoidable event, the trial fee for any additional testing may be waived.
Additional testing due to questionable distinctness or uniformity
At the conclusion of the expected testing period, the evaluation results may not be sufficient for a conclusive DUS recommendation. In this situation, the applicant will be provided with variety information recorded by PVRO and additional testing may be offered to the applicant, with the understanding that a fee will be charged for the additional testing in the usual manner. The applicant can then decide whether to approve the additional testing, and allow the application to continue, or withdraw the application. Should the applicant do nothing then the application will be declined.
Additional testing due to missing varieties
Additional testing may also be required due to varieties missing from the growing trial. This can occur in two ways:
- A required variety may be absent from the growing trial due to that variety not being identified as similar during preliminary examination. Information regarding the identification of a similar variety is available in our technical guidance document on varieties of common knowledge.
A similar variety may be identified by the examiner during testing and examination when greater morphological information about the candidate variety is available from the DUS evaluation. The examiner may then include that variety in an additional growing trial. This situation will add cost to the applicant, lengthen the testing period and prolong the time to any Rights decision.
- Growing trial coordinators who are responsible for trial establishment on an applicant or other property need to ensure that varieties requested by the examiner are present. At the beginning of an evaluation, any missing varieties will be noted and if the trial coordinator has not already communicated with the examiner regarding this, additional testing will be probable in order to include any missing varieties. This situation will add cost to the applicant, lengthen the testing period and prolong the time to any Rights decision.