paper, 289 pp., $42.00
The gist of the text, written by a lawyer of African background, centers on the legal rights of a country of origin of a plant species, a subject that touches on the sources and sustainability of plants. As the author points out, there are several legal issues that must be considered. This is a situation that divides the hemispheres. He works his way through various rights of developing countries as the original owners of plant species; these include patent rights or breeder's rights of a given country considering specific plants as intellectual property. These issues are growing in significance; as the author noted, “Africa is 87% dependent on plant genetic resources for food and agriculture originating from other parts of the world.” Even the U.S. Supreme Court has taken an interest in these rights, in its current investigation of issues related to Bowman v. Monsanto. This book will be of interest to lawyers (perhaps even members of the Supreme Court), policy makers, and professionals in pharmacology and plant breeding and genetics.
— Marilyn K. Alaimo, garden writer and volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden