Implementing Farmers' Rights under the Plant Treaty

17 June 2015, CGIAR Master Class, Charles Lawson

This master class traced the origins of Farmers’ Rights through their negotiation in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (Plant Treaty) and their early practice. This analysis is an attempt to understand the legal objects of Farmers’ Rights and the scope of the legal obligations attaching to Farmers’ Rights. The master class placed the analysis in the context of the post-colonial attempts to bridge the divide between developing and developed countries set out in the United Nation’s Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order. The master class concluded that Farmers’ Rights have so far failed to bridge this divide and suggests that there is some prospect of redress through the financial mechanisms in the Plant Treaty. As such Farmers’ Rights remain aspirational and a crucible for disquiet about the divide between developing and developed countries.


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