Hemp Seed Certification

What is the goal of Seed Certification?

The goal of seed certification is to maintain varietal purity to ensure that growers receive the genetically pure, high-quality seed they expect.  

How do I get my variety in Certification?

A variety must be accepted into certification through an AOSCA Variety Review Board (VRB) or an AOSCA member agency variety review process.  

What exactly is a Variety Review Board (VRB)?

The variety review is conducted by representatives of seed certifying agencies, academia, the seed industry, and USDA.  Reviewers follow requirements established in the Federal Seed Act to make certain new varieties are distinct, uniform, genetically stable, and meets all requirements of a variety.  

How do I grow Certified Seed?

A variety that has passed a VRB or an AOSCA agency is then eligible for the production of Certified hemp seed, transplants, or clones, following the state agency standards for your production location.  You will be required to work with the seed certifying agency in your state or country to grow hemp to that agency set of standards. The process must begin with either Breeder, Foundation, or Registered seed to produce certified seed. 

What is the process of Certifying Seed?

First, you will either need to produce or purchase seed of the Breeder, Foundation or Registered Class.  Second, make an application for inspection with your state agency.  Third, pass field/greenhouse inspection reports, analysis reports, and any additional test required by the agency then and only then can the seed be labeled with a Certified tag that shows customers are receiving the genetically pure variety they requested. 

Does AOSCA Certify Seed?

AOSCA does not certify any seed variety. Certification takes place after a variety passes a VRB or approval process in a AOSCA member agency. If you run across a media release using the term “AOSCA approved” or “AOSCA Certified” they simply do not understand the process.  The use of these terms misleading, incorrect and should be discontinued. 

What are the four classes of Certified Seed?

1. Breeder Seed- is seed originally produced from the plant breeder and are labeled with a white tag
2. Foundation Seed- is the progeny of Breeder Seed, also labeled with a white tag
3. Registered Seed- is the progeny of Foundation Seed, labeled with a purple tag
4. Certified Seed- typically progeny of Registered Seed labeled with a blue tag

Process of Certified Hemp Seed