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California Crop Improvement Association
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California Crop Improvement Association


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GENERAL STANDARDS -- The standards on this sheet are in part condensed and apply to rape. For greater detail and additional provisions, see the General Standards.

PLANTING STOCK -- In most varieties Breeder seed must be planted to produce Foundation seed, and Foundation seed must be planted to produce Certified seed. There is no Registered rape seed production in California.

APPLICATION -- Applications should be submitted electronically on CCIA’s website (Application to grow certified seed instructions) as soon as possible and no later than three (3) weeks after planting. New applicants should contact the CCIA office for instructions on obtaining access to the online application system.

FIELD ELIGIBILITY -- To produce the Foundation class of seed the land must not have grown mustard, oilseed radish, or another variety of Brassica napus or B. rapa for the preceding five (5) years. To produce the Certified class of seed, fields must not have grown mustard, oilseed radish, or another variety of B. napus or B. rapa for three (3) years [five (5) years if OECD certification is anticipated].

ISOLATION -- For Foundation class, B. napus and B. rapa must be isolated from different varieties of the same species by at least 1320’, from varieties of the other species and from Brown or Oriental Mustard by at least 660’.

For Certified class, B. napus and B. rapa must be isolated from other varieties of either species and Brown or Oriental Mustard by at least 330’. A separation of at least 10’ is necessary between fields producing the same variety of either class.

FIELD INSPECTION -- Each field intended for certification must be inspected prior to harvest. At least (1) one inspection shall be made preferably during the early-bloom stage.

Off-types -- Every field should be rogued to remove any plants of another crop or variety. Varieties cannot always be differentiated at field inspection. When differences can be distinguished, the maximum mixture of other varieties, distinct off-types, and inseparable other crops permitted is as follows:


Weeds -- Fields must be free of any prohibited noxious weeds. Restricted noxious weeds, and common weeds difficult to separate must be controlled. Prohibited and Restricted noxious weeds are listed in the California Seed Law/CA Code of Regulations/Sections 3854 and 3855. See California Seed Law - Prohibited and Restricted Noxious Weed List.

Fields may be refused certification due to unsatisfactory appearance caused by weeds, poor growth, poor stand, disease, insect damage, and any other condition which prevents accurate inspection or creates doubt as to identity of the variety.

A Field Inspection Report will be available to the applicant online. If the field is approved, a certification number will be assigned. This number must be on all containers of seed before they leave the field. It is the responsibility of the applicant to make sure his field has been inspected before it is harvested.

HARVESTING -- Harvesting is subject to the supervision of the local County Agricultural Commissioner who must be contacted prior to harvest. Any seed moved out of the county must be accompanied by an Inter-County Permit or Interstate Transfer issued by the Commissioner.

CONDITIONING AND SAMPLING -- Conditioning of seed for certification may be done only in facilities approved for this purpose by the California Crop Improvement Association. It is the responsibility of the applicant to determine if the facility is eligible before delivering seed for conditioning. Conditioning, sampling, reconditioning, and blending must be supervised by the County Agricultural Commissioner. Conditioning equipment must be free from contaminating seed to the satisfaction of the supervising inspector.

SEED INSPECTION - All seed must be sampled and tested after conditioning and the seed lot must meet or exceed seed certification standards for that crop. A seed lab using the Association of Official Seed Analyst “Rules for Testing” must test the sample. A Registered Seed Technologist must sign each lab analysis. In addition to AOSA rules, specific seed testing may be required to meet CCIA seed certification standards.

The conditioner is required to submit a 450 gram sample to the laboratory for analysis. (Submitted Sample Sizes for Certification). In some instances, varietal identity cannot be determined by visual seed inspections. Seed must be well screened and graded, bright in color, of good appearance and meet the following standards:

Pure seed 99.50% (Minimum)
Inert Matter 0.50% (Maximum)
Total other crop kinds, Brassica spp., and Raphanus raphanistrum
Foundation 1 seed per pound (Maximum)
Certified 5 seeds per pound (Maximum)
Weed Seed
Foundation 5 seeds per pound (Maximum)
Certified 15 seeds per pound (Maximum)
Other varieties
Foundation 0.05% (Maximum)
Certified 0.1% (Maximum)
Noxious Weed Seed None
Germination 85.00% (Minimum)

The CCIA requires Reports of Analysis for initial certification to be dated no more than a maximum of six (6) months prior to the request for seed certification. The 'Purity Analysis' and 'Germination' must be conducted on the same laboratory seed sample and those results must be presented in a single Report of Analysis.

FINAL CERTIFICATION AND TAGGING -- If the seed sample meets all standards a Seed Inspection Report is issued. Before certification is complete, however, each container must have an official tag or label attached. Certified seed may be sold to a grower in bulk without tagging if a properly filled out Bulk Sale Certificate accompanies the shipment. The tags and Bulk Sale Certificates are issued by the California Crop Improvement Association.

Updated November 2015 

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