Plant breeding results in new, improved plant varieties that are an important and sustainable means of achieving food security in the context of population growth and climate change.
New varieties that are adapted to the environment in which they are grown increase the choice of healthy, tasty and nutritious food while generating a viable income for farmers. New varieties also support the development of urban agriculture and the growing of ornamental plants, shrubs and trees that contribute to improving the lives of people in the expanding urban environment.
Successful plant breeding requires great skill and knowledge in a process that can take up to 15 years to introduce a new plant variety to the market. Not all new plant varieties are successful, even though the best prospects are selected from thousands of individuals during the breeding process. Sustained and long-term breeding efforts are only worthwhile if there is a chance to be rewarded for the investment made, which is why plant variety protection (PVP) is an important system for plant breeders.