106-277.2. Definitions.

As used in this Article, unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

(1) The term "advertisement" means all representations, other than those required on the label, disseminated in any manner or by any means, relating to seed within the scope of this Article.

(2) The term "agricultural seeds" shall include the seed of grass, forage, cereal, fiber crops and any other kinds of seeds commonly recognized within this State as agricultural or field seeds, lawn seeds and mixtures of such seeds, and may include noxious-weed seeds when the Commissioner determines that such seed is being used as agricultural seed.

(2a) - (2e) Reserved.

(2f) The term "blend" means a mechanical combination of varieties identified by a blend designation in which each component variety is equal to or above the minimum standard germination for its class; which is always present in the same percentage in each lot identified by the same "blend" designation; and for which research data supports an advantage of the "blend" over the singular use of either component variety. "Blend" designations shall be treated as variety names.

(3) The term "Board" means the North Carolina Board of Agriculture as established under G.S. 106-2.

(3a) Reserved.

(3b) The term "brand" means an identifying numeral, letter, word, or any combination of these, used with the word "brand" to designate source of seeds.

(3c) The term "buyer" means a person who buys agricultural or vegetable seed for the purpose of planting and growing the seed.

(4) The terms "certified seeds," "registered seeds" or "foundation seeds" mean seed that has been produced and labeled in accordance with the procedures and in compliance with the requirements of an official seed-certifying agency.

(5) The term "clone" means all the individuals derived by vegetative propagation from a single, original individual.

(6) The term "code designation" means a series of numbers or letters approved by the United States Department of Agriculture and used in lieu of the full name and address of the person who labels seeds, as required in this Article in G.S. 106-277.5(10).

(7) The term "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Agriculture of North Carolina or his designated agent or agents.

(7a) The term "conditioning" means cleaning, scarifying, or blending to obtain uniform quality and other operations that would change the purity or germination of the seed and therefore require retesting to determine the quality of the seed, but does not include operations such as packaging, labeling, blending together of uniform lots of the same kind, or kind and variety, without cleaning, or preparation of a mixture without cleaning, any of which would not require retesting to determine the quality of the seed.

(8) The term "date of test" means the month and year the percentage of germination appearing on the label was obtained by laboratory test.

(9) The term "dealer" or "vendor" shall mean any person, not classified as a grower, who buys, sells or offers for sale any seed for seeding purposes and shall include any person who has seed grown under contract for resale for seeding purposes.

(9a) The term "Department" means the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services as established in G.S. 106-2.

(9b) The term "distribute" means to provide seed for seeding purposes to more than five persons, but shall not include seed provided for educational purposes.

(10) The term "germination" means the percentages by count of seeds under consideration, determined to be capable of producing normal seedlings in a given period of time and under normal conditions.

(11) The term "grower" shall mean any person who produces seed, directly as a landlord, tenant, sharecropper or lessee, which are offered or exposed for sale.

(12) The term "hard seeds" means seeds which, because of hardness or impermeability, do not absorb moisture and germinate but remain hard during the normal period of germination.

(13) The term "hybrid" means the first generation seed of a cross produced by controlling cross-fertilization within prescribed limits and combining (i) two or more inbred lines or clones, or (ii) one or more inbred lines or clones with an open-pollinated variety, or (iii) two or more varieties or species, clonal or otherwise, except open-pollinated varieties of normally cross-fertilized species. The second-generation or subsequent-generation seed from such crosses shall not be designated as hybrids. Hybrid designations shall be treated as variety names. The Board of Agriculture shall prescribe minimum limits of pollination control (percent hybridity) for each hybridized species which will qualify to be labeled "hybrid".

(14) The term "inbred line" means a relatively stable and pure breeding strain resulting from not less than four successive generations of controlled self-pollination or four successive generations of backcrossing in the case of male sterile lines or their genetic equivalent.

(15) The term "in bulk" refers to loose seed in bins, or open containers, and not to seed in bags or packets.

(16) The term "inert matter" means all matter not seeds, including broken seeds, sterile florets, chaff, fungus bodies, stones and other substances found not to be seed when examined according to procedures prescribed by rules and regulations promulgated pursuant to the provisions of this Article.

(17) The term "kind" means one or more related species or subspecies which singly or collectively is known by one common name, for example, corn, wheat, striate lespedeza, alfalfa, tall fescue.

(18) The term "labeling" includes all labels and other written, printed or graphic representations in any manner whatsoever accompanying and pertaining to any seed whether in bulk or in containers and includes representations on invoices.

(19) The term "lot" means a definite quantity of seed, identified by a lot number or other identification, which shall be uniform throughout for the factors which appear on the label.

(20) The term "mixture" means seeds consisting of more than one kind or kind and variety, each present in excess of five per centum (5%) of the whole.

(21) The term "North Carolina seed analysis tag" means the tag designed and prescribed by the Commissioner as the official North Carolina seed analysis tag.

(22) "Noxious-weed seeds" shall be divided into two classes:

a. "Prohibited noxious-weed seeds" are the seeds of weeds which, when established on the land, are highly destructive and are not controlled in this State by cultural practices commonly used, and shall include any crop seed found to be harmful when fed to poultry or livestock.

b. "Restricted noxious-weed seeds" are the seeds of weeds which are very objectionable in fields, lawns and gardens in this State and are difficult to control by cultural practices commonly used.

(23) The term "official certifying agency" means

a. An agency authorized under the laws of a state, territory, or possession to officially certify seed which has standards and procedures approved by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to assure the genetic purity and identity of the seed certified, or

b. An agency of a foreign country determined by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to adhere to procedures and standards for seed certification comparable to those adhered to generally by seed certifying agencies under a.

(24) The term "origin" means the state, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, possession of the United States or the foreign country where the seed was grown.

(25) The term "other crop seeds" means seeds of kinds or varieties of agricultural or vegetable crops other than those shown on the label as the primary kind or kind and variety.

(26) The term "person" shall include any individual, partnership, corporation, company, society or association.

(27) Repealed by Session Laws 2009-455, s. 2, effective October 1, 2009.

(28) The term "pure seed" means agricultural or vegetable seeds, exclusive of inert matter, weed seeds and all other seeds distinguishable from the kind or kind and variety being considered when examined according to procedures prescribed by rules and regulations promulgated pursuant to the provisions of this Article.

(29) The term "purity" means the name or names of the kind, type or variety and the percentage or percentages thereof, the percentage of other crop seed; the percentage of weed seeds, including noxious-weed seeds; the percentage of inert matter; and the name and rate of occurrence of each noxious-weed seed.

(30) The terms "recognized variety name" and "recognized hybrid designation" mean the name or designation which was first assigned the variety or hybrid by the person who developed it or the person who first introduced it for production or sale after legal acquisition. Such terms shall be used only to designate the varieties or hybrids to which they were first assigned.

(31) Repealed by Session Laws 2009-455, s. 2, effective October 1, 2009.

(32) The term "seed offered for sale" means any seed or grain, whether in bags, packets, bins or other containers, exposed in salesrooms, storerooms, warehouses or other places where seed is sold or delivered for seeding purposes, and shall be subject to the provisions of the seed law, unless clearly labeled "not for sale as seed."

(33) The term "seizure" means a legal process carried out by court order against a definite amount of seed.

(34) The term "stop-sale" means an administrative order provided by law restraining the sale, use, disposition and movement of a definite amount of seed.

(35) The term "treated" means given an application of a substance or subjected to a process designed to reduce, control or repel disease organisms, insects or other pests which attack seeds or seedlings growing therefrom, or to improve the planting value of the seed.

(36) The term "variety" means a subdivision of a kind characterized by growth, plant, fruit, seed or other constant characteristics by which it can be differentiated in successive generations from other sorts of the same kind; for example, Knox Wheat, Kobe Striate Lespedeza, Ranger Alfalfa, Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue.

(37) The term "vegetable seeds" shall include the seeds of those crops which are grown in gardens or on truck farms and are generally known and sold under the name of vegetable seed in this State.

(38) The term "weed seeds" means the seeds, bulblets or tubers of all plants generally recognized as weeds within this State or which may be classified as weed seed by regulations promulgated under this Article.

(39) The term "wholesaler" shall mean a dealer engaged in the business of selling seed to retailers or jobbers as well as to consumers.

(40), (41) Repealed by Session Laws 1998, c. 210, s. 1. (1941, c. 114, s. 3; 1943, c. 203, s. 1; 1945, c. 828; 1949, c. 725; 1953, c. 856, ss. 1-3; 1963, c. 1182; 1971, c. 637, s. 1; 1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 1034, ss. 2-4; 1998-210, s. 1; 2009-455, s. 2.)