Founded in 1883, the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) is one of the oldest trade organizations in the United States. Its membership consists of over 700 companies involved in seed production and distribution, plant breeding, and related industries in North America. As an authority on plant germplasm, ASTA advocates science and policy issues of industry-wide importance. ASTA’s mission is to be an effective voice of action in all matters concerning the development, marketing and movement of seed, associated products and services throughout the world. ASTA promotes the development of better seed to produce better crops for a better quality of life. The American Seed Trade Association, directed by its members, is involved in nearly all issues relating to plant germplasm, focusing on three areas of industry importance: - Regulatory and legislative matters at international, national and state levels; - New technologies impacting all crop species; and - Communication and education of members and appropriate public audiences regarding science and policy issues affecting the seed industry. Activities include enhancing the visibility of seed issues in the public arena; advocating industry-wide positions on policy issues; informing members about environmental and conservation issues and new developments in plant breeding, such as the use of modern biotechnology; conducting meetings to inform members about seed issues and to encourage fellowship among seed professionals; promoting global sales of US seeds; funding select seed research programs; and maintaining positive working relationships with related professional organizations.