Publication Ethics

Correction / Retraction

We encourage authors to notify us if they discover an error in one of their already published articles. Depending on the severity, we will correct it, replace the PDF and include a short note to the readers, or we will retract the article. Reasons for a retraction are: double publication, plagiarism, copyright violation, unreliable data due to data fabrication or honest error, willful exclusion of a legitimate author and otherwise unethical behavior. If any reader notices a major problem, please bring it to the attention to one of the editors-in-chief. We adhere to the retraction guidelines of the Committee of Publication ethics.


Only people who contributed substantially to the writing of a manuscript or to the research presented therein should be named as authors. Providing funding or lab space is not reason enough to be listed as author. We do not support guest or gift authorship. Should a manuscript feature a suspiciously long author list, the submitting author might be asked to state who contributed what to the submission.

Changes to the author list after submission have to be discussed with the responsible editor and are only permitted in exceptional cases, for example when additional work was required during the revision of the manuscript. All co-authors have to agree to the change.


Authors should cite their previous publications where appropriate but should avoid excessive self-citation. We do not request authors to cite from previous JABFQ issues for the sake of impact factor improvement and citing many JABFQ articles does not influence the editor’s decision. However, authors are free to cite from the journal if suitable.

Text recycling

While text recycling, also called self-plagiarism, is sometimes unavoidable when describing a method, we take it seriously in all other parts of a manuscript. All incoming submissions are screened for plagiarism and the authors’ previous publications are checked for substantial overlap. If an author chooses to split one big experiment into several publications, they should make a clear statement on this in their manuscript, explain their decision and cite the other publication (or provide the unpublished manuscript along with the submission). We do not approve of manuscripts, which contain a minimum of content to enhance a scientist’s publication list. If we become aware of this practice, the manuscript will be rejected and the author might get grey-listed and their next submissions will be scrutinized very carefully.

It is difficult for scientists to handle the ever-increasing amount of published research articles. Therefore, results should be presented as concise and complete as possible and not be scattered in several articles across different journals.

Conflict of interest – Authors

Authors must add a conflict of interest statement to their manuscript, if their research was (partially) funded by companies associated with the investigated subject (i.e. a company that produces or markets an investigated substance or cultivar) or if one of the authors is associated with such a company, although no direct funding was provided.

Conflict of interest – Reviewers

Editors take great care to select reviewers, who have not previously published together with the authors of the manuscript and who are not employed by the same institution as the authors. However, if a reviewer notices their connection to the authors of a manuscript after agreeing to review (authors’ names are disclosed to the reviewer only after acceptance), they are asked to inform the editor and step down from their assignment. Reviewers should also decline to undertake the review, if their own work is too close to the described study and could be seen as competition. Authors can ask the editor not to consider certain individuals as reviewers for their manuscript, if they suspect a conflict of interest.

Conflict of interest – Editors

Editors are allowed to publish in the journal, since it is the central publishing organ of their learned society. Section Editors are not able to gain any editorial information on their own manuscripts beyond what an external author can access. A manuscript from an Editor-in-Chief is handled by the other Editor-in-Chief.
Being a member of the Editorial Team or a member of one of the publishing societies does not influence the expectations on quality and novelty of the presented research nor the outcome of the reviewing and editorial decision process. 
Neither Section Editors nor the Editors-in-Chief are financially compensated for their editorial work on the journal.