WACO, Tex. – The United States District Court for the Western District of Texas entered judgment in favor of Northern Agri Brands, LLC, the owner of seed genetics technology, in its federal Plant Variety Protection Act lawsuit filed in 2019 against a Texas seed company and its operators. U.S. District Judge Alan D. Albright ordered Cen-Tex Seed and Delinting Holding Co., along with two of its operators, Matthew and Suzanne Matus, to pay $200,000 in damages to Northern Agri. The court also enjoined Cen-Tex Seed and the other defendants from future activities in violation of the federal law.
“We believe it is important for seed dealers to have a level playing field and for producers to follow the law when selling and offering for sale varieties protected under state and federal laws,” said Ted Rogers of Northern Agri Brands, LLC.
The lawsuit claimed Cen-Tex Seed, based in Hillsboro, Tex., infringed Northern Agri’s intellectual property rights in two varieties of triticale known as TriCal brand SY TF 813 and SY TF 131. Both varieties are protected under state and federal laws that prohibit unauthorized use, multiplication and/ or sales of protected seed. These laws aim to encourage innovation and development of new seed varieties. The case was brought after investigators discovered harvested and non-certified triticale being offered for sale by Cen-Tex Seed.
“If producers desire tomorrow’s improved varieties to have greater tonnage, enhanced disease tolerance, better standability, then our industry needs to show their support for the legal way of doing business,” added Ted Rogers.