1What is Breeder Seed?
The original source of all classes of certified seed is called Breeder seed. Breeder seed is held, maintained, and controlled by the originating plant breeder, sponsoring plant breeder or institution in such a way to maintain genetic purity and identity. Breeder seed provides the direct source of Foundation seed.
2What is Foundation Seed?
The progeny of Breeder or Foundation seed is produced under control of the originator, sponsoring plant breeding institution, or designee thereof. As applied to certified seed, Foundation seed is a class of certified seed that is produced according to policies and procedures established by AOSCA for the purpose of maintaining genetic purity and identity of a variety.
3What is Registered Seed?
The progeny of Breeder or Foundation seed is Registered seed, which is produced according to policies and procedures established by AOSCA for the purpose of maintaining genetic purity and identity of a variety. In some crops or varieties there is no Registered class.
4Certified Seed Definition
The progeny of Breeder, Foundation, or Registered seed is Certified seed. This is produced according to policies and procedures established by AOSCA for the purpose of maintaining genetic purity and identity of a variety. The Association of Official Seed Certification Agencies (AOSCA) sets minimum requirements and standards for various species.

Basic information that should be included on each seed tag includes:

1Kind & Variety
This may include the species or common name, and cultivar or variety name of the plant and distinguishes it from other seeds of the same kind.
2Lot number
Defined quantity of seeds identified by a lot number or mark. Every portion or bag of which is uniform, within permitted tolerances, relative to the factors which appear in the labeling.
Location identifying where the seed was grown. This may be listed as a state or may be a more specific locations with Pre-Varietal Releases.
4Net Weight
Total bulk weight of bag or container.
5Pure seed test
A purity test (% Purity) separates pure seed, inert matter, other crop seed, and weed seed. Purity expresses the composition of the seed lot and its degree of contamination by unwanted components. Purity + inert matter + weed seed+ other crop seed must add up to 100%. Purity may vary greatly by species.
6Germination test
A germination test (% Germination) determines the capability of a seed lot to produce normal seedlings under favorable controlled conditions.
7Dormant Seed %
Dormant seed (%Dormant seed) often referred to as hard seed and includes the portion of the seed sample that doesn’t germinate during the seed test. Reasons for dormant seed are: 1) the seed coat is impervious to water, and/or 2) internal structures within the seed prohibit oxygen exchange.
8Germination Test Date
The germination test date, in state or out of state shipment, should be current due to the natural decline in germination over time. Seed test should be updated every 6-12 months depending on the species and state laws. For interstate shipments most states require a test to be no older than 6 months.
9Inert matter
 Inert matter includes dirt, plant parts, and certain types of damaged seeds. High levels of inert matter have an effect on planting efficiency, especially when using a grassland seed drill. As with purity, inert matter will vary by species.
10Other crop seed
Seeds of species of all varieties, not of the kind or variety declared on the label.
11Weed seeds
Includes seeds (% weed seed) of all plants that are considered to be undesirable, troublesome, or unwanted. The amount of common, restricted, and noxious weed seed found in the lot will be listed separately.
12Name of restricted noxious seed
Noxious weeds (# per pound of seed) are plants which are highly destructive and difficult to control by good cultural practices and the use of herbicides. Whenever a seed lot is tested, it is examined for the presence of “Restricted” and “Prohibited” noxious weed seed. Each state has its own list of prohibited and restricted noxious weeds. Restricted noxious weeds are allowed in seed lots, but the number of weed seed per pound of seed is restricted. Prohibited noxious weeds are not allowed in any seed lot by rules outlined with in the Federal Seed Act and State Laws. Each state maintains its own list of “Prohibited” and “Restricted” noxious weeds as part of their state seed laws.
13Prohibited noxious seeds (Number per Pound)
Prohibited noxious weed seeds are not allowed in any number within a seed lot. Seed lots can not be sold if they contain any prohibited noxious weed seeds. Seed testing must indicate that no prohibited noxious weed seeds are present.
14Name and address
This includes the name of the company responsible for the analysis. It is often the producer or grower of the seed. It may not always be the seller or the point of purchase or distribution.