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Agricultural News

More Farmland Owned by Foreign Interests

Wed, 21 Jul 2010 17:40:20 CDT

USDA's Farm Service Agency reports that through February 28th of 2009 - 22.2-million acres of U.S. agricultural land was owned in part by foreign persons. That's an increase of 1.3-million acres from 2008. The annual FSA report shows that foreign persons have an interest in 1.7-percent of all privately held U.S. agricultural land and 0.98-percent of all land in the United States.

According to the report 59-percent of all U.S. forestland has some foreign ownership. Fourteen-percent of the cropland and 27-percent of pasture and other agricultural land also has some foreign ownership. About one-third of that land is owned in part by Canadians. Thirty-percent of the owners are from Netherlands, United Kingdom or Germany. The states with the highest proportions of foreign owned agricultural land to all privately owned agricultural land are Maine, Hawaii, Washington, Nevada and Alabama.

Federal regulations require foreign investors who acquire, transfer or hold an interest other than a security interest in U.S. agricultural land to report such holdings and transactions to the Secretary of Agriculture. The data gained from these disclosures is used in the preparation of an annual report to Congress.


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