Protecting our ideas

The Grains Research and Development Corporation has made another multi-million dollar investment in the future of agriculture in Australia.

Earlier this year the GRDC announced it would support the new Australian Centre for Intellectual Property in Agriculture to the level of $4.4 million over five years.

Federal Agriculture Minister Warren Truss said the creation of the centre marked an important step in protecting Australia's investment in rural research and development.

"Cutting-edge rural research and development is the cornerstone of an innovative, competitive and sustainable agricultural sector.

"Managing intellectual property issues, especially those involving the new biotechnologies, is an area of rapid growth and it is paramount Australia take the necessary steps to protect its investments and discoveries," he said.

The centre is located within the Australian National University's Law School and aims to secure Australian technological innovation and better commercialise ideas and products developed in the country.

The centre will concentrate on six core areas including patents, biotechnology, plant variety rights, commercialisation, management and collaboration between private and public sectors.

Professor Brad Sherman, Director of ACIPA, said the intellectual property to be protected in Australia is extremely various. "It includes farming practices, plant and animal breeding, methods of manufacture, production, sale, trademarks and outcomes of scientific research."

The ACIPA web site is at http://law.anu.edu.au/acipa

Program 4.2.1

Contact: Mr Christopher Newton

02 6125 3488