Use of genetic resources

Genetic resources are essential to life and an important resource for the entirety of mankind. Our food is based on genetic resources, as are forestry products and our living environment.  Furthermore, many medications and biotech products are also a way to utilise genetic resources.

The value of genetic resources to mankind, both now and in the future, is so vital that they have to be available for use for the good of the entirety of humankind. On the other hand, it must also be ensured that the benefits derived from the genetic resources are shared in a fair and equitable manner, and that the role of indigenous people as the holders of their own genetic resources and traditional knowledge is recognised.

These pages deal with issues related to access to genetic resources and the fair sharing of benefits arising from their use. Internationally the use of genetic resources is guided by the Nagoya Protocol which entered into force in Finland on the first of September 2016. The legislation related to the Protocol is applied to the genetic resources of plants, animals nad microbes whenever they are obtained for research and development purposes.