From the Native Food Forum
(use the link to the left to go to the forum itself.)
Posted by: Rimbaud
Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 10:45 am
Post subject: An important legal announcement regarding Nicotiana species
Believe it or not guys, the Tax Office has a very different view of the botanical world than you or
i! (surprise surprise)
I made an enquiry with the ATO and was contacted by an intelligence officer this morning.
He advised that the sale or even possession (i.e. cultivation) of any plants which both:
1. possess a common name with the word "tobacco" (ANYBODY'S common name!!!! For example the "Blue Tobacco Tree")
2. belong to the Nicotiana genus
is illegal without a tobacco growers license.
Astonishingly, this applies to native tobacco plants like Nicotiana suaveolens and
As a consequence of this advice, all Nicotiana seeds have been removed
from my web site, & all Nicotiana plants i own have been destroyed
(by me). No doubt i'll see them popping up from time to time as
weeds... and when i do, sorry little fellas, but i gotta remove ya.
Native "Aboriginal tobacco" seeds are illegal to sell without a
license(on initial advice) because the Act groups all plant parts
together (it lists seed, leaf, flower etc. together). If you have a
lawyer & want to dispute the matter with the ATO (good chance you'd
win) then maybe you could take a risk here. Unfortunately i can't
afford a lawyer
And of course to BUY tobacco seeds you ALSO need to be licensed. A pretty small market there!
Botanical gardens possess specific licenses for the growing of species
in the Nicotiana genus (and if they don't, they are committing a