Ageing of all organisms is a genetically coded inevitable consequence of life processes, which are modified by extemal factors. Peroxidation processes, synthesis of toxic compounds and Maillard reaction, are the most important processes in seeds, affecting ageing rate. A counter balance for them is provided by natural defence mechanisms including anti-oxidation processes and repair systems. Stimulation of natural defence mechanisms and application of antioxidants may be the methods counteracting negative reactions and decreasing ageing of seeds. The more efficient the anti-oxidation system, the higher seed vigour. High quality of seeds thanks to selection, optimal storage conditions and conditioning can significantly increase the longevity of seeds.