Time to Restrict Foreign Land Ownership?
Must show U.S. ID to purchase land? Maybe! TalkBusiness.net is now reporting that states are considering restricting foreign purchases of agriculture and forest lands.
Foreigners and foreign-based companies have owned agriculture and forestry land in the U.S. since before it was founded, and in recent years that trend has been on the rise. As foreign ownership of U.S. farmlands increases, will more states consider restrictions on these land buys? Over the past year, Missouri, Texas, and Alabama have all looked at the possibility.
According to a 2020 U.S. Department of Agriculture report, foreign persons hold an interest in nearly 37.6 million acres of private U.S. agricultural land, an increase of 2.4 million acres from 2019. Since 2015, foreign investments have increased an average of 2.2 million acres per year. Foreign investors from Canada, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom represent 63% of all foreign agricultural landholdings in the U.S.
The top three states with foreign owned lands are Alabama, Maine, and Texas. There are 4.4 million acres in Texas that are foreign owned, followed by Maine (3.3 million acres), and Alabama (1.8 million), the USDA reported.