1.2.1 Grammatical interpretation

The Enlarged Board stated that when interpreting provisions of the EPC, it usually starts from the wording of the relevant provision and even if the wording of a provision reveals its meaning clearly, it is then to be examined whether the result of the literal interpretation is confirmed by the meaning of the words in their context. It could well be that the wording only superficially has a clear meaning. At any rate, a literal interpretation must not contradict the purpose of the provision (see G 1/90, OJ 1991, 275, 278, point 4 of the Reasons); G 6/91 (OJ 1992, 491, 499, point 15 of the Reasons); G 3/98 (OJ 2001, 62, 71, point 2.2 of the Reasons). However, in the case in point, more than one meaning could in principle be attributed to the wording (cf. G 1/88, OJ 1989, 189, 193, point 2.2 of the Reasons). Therefore, the true and intended meaning of the term "essentially biological processes for the production of plants" needed to be analysed further.

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