Seed Certification Scheme

Seed Certification is a legal requirement to ensure that farmers and growers receive seeds of known minimum quality.

Seeds Regulations

The Seeds Regulations state that seed may only be marketed if it is certified that it meets specified minimum standards in respect of varietal purity, health and germination and comes from crops of certain standards. Seed that meets these standards may be certified under the Department's Seed Certification Scheme.

Uncertified seed may not, with certain exceptions, be marketed.
DAERA is the Certifying Authority for Northern Ireland and as such is responsible for the administrative and operational arrangements for the Seed Certification Schemes.

Regulations made by Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) cover the marketing of cereal seeds, fodder plant seeds, beet seeds, oil and fibre plant seeds, vegetable seeds, licensing, enforcement and fees.

How to enter the Seed Certification Scheme

For information on how to certify seed in Northern Ireland please refer to the Department's Guide to Seed Certification in Northern Ireland. Alternatively contact DAERA's Environmental Farming Branch for an information pack and application forms by;

Telephone: 028 9052 4876,
Email:, or
Writing to:

Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs
Environmental Farming Branch
Room 651
Dundonald House
Upper Newtownards Road

Closing dates for cereal seed lot entry


Entry of seed lots

Entry of crops

Cereal seeds    
Cereals - winter sown 7 November 31 January
Cereals - Spring sown 7 April 15 May
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