The abbreviation VCU stands for Value for Cultivation and Use. VCU-testing involves determining the agricultural value of the variety. The VCU-test is necessary to gain admission to the national catalogue for varieties of agricultural species. The Board for Plant Varieties is responsible for carrying out the legal-VCU.
The legal-VCU-testing takes 2 years and is organised and financed by the breeders (Plantum) and, depending on the specie, also by the processing industry and the farmers. The financiers are organised in VCU Working Groups, in which also the Arable Branche Organisation is represented. To carry out the VCU-testing, please submit the form “Application for Plant Breeders’ Rights and/or Listing” and the necessary technical description sheets for VCU-testing. The costs will be charged on a post-calculation basis.
If you would like information on the quantity and submission dates of the material to be submitted for the VCU, please contact the implementing institutions:
- WUR Field Crops in Lelystad for maize, winter wheat, spring wheat and spring barley
- Delphy in Wageningen for the green manuring crops fodder radish, white mustard and Black oats
- WUR Livestock Research in Wageningen for foddergrasses, white and red clover and lucerne
- IRS (Institute for Sugar Production) in Dinteloord for sugar beet and chicory
- NAK Services B.V. in Emmeloord for potato
For VCU-testing of other agricultural species you can contact Naktuinbouw.
After the results of VCU-testing are known, the decision to admit or reject the variety follows. The Board for Plant Varieties is responsible for the method and design of the testing as described in the VCU-specie protocols. For most species, VCU-results are published in press releases on the website rassenlijst CSAR. This is a website of The Recommended List Committee (CSAR).
Attention: the admission of a variety of an agricultural crop requires that the variety has passed both the DUS-test and the VCU-test with a positive result.
VCU for the purpose of the Recommended Varieties List
Besides the legal VCU-test (duration 2 years) for the purpose of admission to the National Catalogue, for most species the VCU-testing is followed by an extra growth cycle (VCU lasts 3 years) for the purpose of the Recommended List of Varieties of Agricultural Crops. Based on in total 3 years of VCU-testing, CSAR decides if the variety will be included in the Recommended List of Varieties of Agricultural Crops. This list is issued annually by CSAR.