A plant variety represents the plant group of a botanical taxon of the lowest known grade. Plant varieties cannot be protected by a patent for invention, but can be protected with a specific industrial property right if the variety possesses the patentability requirements. According to these requirements, a plant variety must be new, distinct, homogeneous and stable.
The new plant varieties form the subject of an industrial property right for the breeder, that is, for the person who created or who discovered and developed the variety. The protection of plant varieties has the purpose of encouraging the creation of new plant varieties through the recognition of a commercial exclusivity, that allows the breeder to recover the investment costs and profit from the commercial exploitation of the protected variety.