Farm bill could include limit on foreign ownership of ag land
Posted on Jun 06, 2023 at 20:00 PM
During its 2023 session, the Georgia General Assembly considered multiple bills proposing prohibition on land ownership by foreign entities, particularly those from nations considered hostile toward the United States.
Now, as Congress conducts its work on a new farm bill, the issue of foreign land ownership is drawing increased attention at the federal level. In published reports, the National Agricultural Law Center (NALC) has said a limit on foreign ag land ownership is likely to be proposed as a part of the new farm bill.
Currently, 22 states have prohibitions or limits to keep nonresident aliens, foreign business entities, or foreign governments from acquiring or owning an interest in private agricultural within their boundaries, according to the NALC resource library on the subject, though none has a total ban on foreign land ownership. Among those with land ownership limits are Alabama, Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee.
There is no federal prohibition, but the federal government does monitor foreign acquisitions or holdings in U.S. agricultural land under the Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act of 1978.
Bills addressing foreign ownership of U.S. agricultural land have recently been introduced in both chambers of Congress. S. 926, titled the Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm act of 2023, was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Mike Braun of Indiana on March 22. H.R. 3357, also titled the Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm act of 2023, was introduced in the House by Rep. Dale Strong of Alabama on May 16. S. 926, also titled the Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm act of 2023, was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Mike Braun of Indiana on March 22.
The NALC has a comprehensive Q&A and extensive collection of resources that focus on foreign ownership of U.S. agricultural land.