• KWS0621_BIT_EG_RT304034_traitway.png
    KWS TraitWay -
    Licensing Innovation

KWS native trait licensing for plant breeding

At KWS, we believe that innovation in plant breeding is key to meet the increasing challenges agriculture is facing across the globe: climate change, increasing demand for food security and political requirements are some examples.

Sharing innovation on fair and reasonable conditions while ensuring adequate IP protection is key for the continuous development of better performing plant varieties. Therefore, KWS is a member of the International Licensing Platform Vegetable (ILP) as well as a founding member of the recently implemented Agricultural Crop Licensing Platform (ACLP).

PVP as the primary IP right for the protection of plant varieties and patents for the protection of technologies and traits are therefore both essential to protect and stimulate innovation in plant breeding. KWS follows a responsible and adequate patenting policy in its commercial activities fully in line with the applicable legal frameworks. Further information on the KWS IP position can be obtained here. A fair balance and co-existence of PVP and patents is the prerequisite for making use of all available means to speed up innovation in plant breeding.

As a first step and fully in line with our transparency approach, KWS now offers its native trait related patent applications and patents for licensing to all interested parties.

Cornerstones of KWS TraitWay

Trait scope

KWS provides native traits as displayed in the catalogue. Molecular Markers are included if they relate to the native trait.


Access to native traits will be provided once commercial varieties containing the native traits are available on the market. For earlier access, individual negotiations are possible.

General availability

Licenses on native traits are available for Europe via a Standard Commercial License Agreement. Royalties are to be negotiated for each individual native trait.

Breeding rights

Access for breeding purposes will be granted on a free-of-charge basis via a Breeding License. Download from the catalogue website, sign and send back to us.


Licenses under the ILP and the ACLP can be obtained independently. Once an ILP or ACLP License is in place, no additional license can be obtained from KWS for the same trait and vice versa.

Our native traits

The development of native traits which carry improved features such as tolerances and resistances takes many years and requires deeply rooted breeding know-how. With over 160 years of experience in plant breeding, KWS can provide a catalogue of native traits with relevant characteristics for plant breeding success. By licensing our native trait patents, we believe we can do our part to enable breeders and growers around the globe to develop varieties for farmers which help to tackle the challenges agriculture is facing today and in the future.

Your contact persons

Questions related to our traits, the contractual elements or the KWS licensing approach? Please reach out to:

Claudia Hallebach
Claudia Hallebach
Head of Global Legal and IP
Send e-mail
Anne Unterforsthuber
Anne Unterforsthuber
Senior Licensing & Alliance Manager
Send e-mail