China Keeps Buying Our Farmland
China is still buying our farmland, and politicians are only just starting to wake up to this fact. We must pray.
From The Wall Street Journal. Alarms went off in Washington when the Fufeng Group, a Chinese agricultural company, bought 300 acres of land and set up a milling plant last spring in Grand Forks, N.D. The plant is a 20-minute drive from an Air Force base that, according to North Dakota Sen. John Hoeven, hosts a space mission that “will form the backbone of U.S. military communications across the globe.”
The deal shouldn’t have taken the federal government by surprise. U.S. Department of Agriculture data show that Chinese ownership of U.S. farmland leapt more than 20-fold in a decade, from $81 million in 2010 to $1.8 billion in 2020. Beijing hasn’t outlined a strategy, but large-scale state backing for these investments indicates there is one. In 2013 the government-owned Bank of China loaned $4 billion to Hong Kong-headquartered WH Group, the world’s largest pork producer, to buy Virginia’s Smithfield Foods. WH now controls much of the U.S. pork supply and revenue because of the deal. …
Government transparency on these investments falls short of basic standards. Until a few months ago, USDA’s online reports went back only as far as 2004 and the data required special software to extract. Information on older purchases could be obtained only through Freedom of Information Act requests. …
Congress should authorize the USDA to cut through byzantine ownership structures and find the true foreign owners of farmland. The recently introduced Farmland Security Act of 2022 would require the department to release all data on foreign investments in American agriculture. The agriculture secretary should be added to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S., which reviews flows of foreign money into sensitive businesses such as surveillance-camera equipment and semiconductors. …
How are you praying against China’s influence? Share this article to keep people informed.
(Excerpt from The Wall Street Journal. Photo Credit: Yan Ke on Unsplash)
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