For Immediate Release: March 25, 2021
Senator Doug Beck Pushes Legislation to End Foreign Purchase of Missouri Farmland
JEFFERSON CITY — State Sen. Doug Beck, D-St. Louis, has sponsored Senate Bill 253 to prevent any foreign business from acquiring agricultural land in the state beginning Aug. 28, 2021. The legislation also requires any proposed transfers of any interest in agricultural land held by any alien or foreign business in the state to be submitted to the Missouri Department of Agriculture (MDA) to determine if the potential buyer is a qualified resident of the United States.
The MDA’s 2020 Foreign Owned Agriculture Land report found 99,369 acres of Missouri’s agricultural land is now owned by foreign entities, including 42,596 acres owned by Chinese companies. These numbers bring a new urgency to advance the legislation and prevent foreign investors from purchasing Missouri farmland.
“Missouri’s farms should be owned by Missouri farmers or American companies that truly cherish our land, water and air,” said Sen. Beck. “Missouri’s own Mark Twain said it best when he said, ‘Buy land, they’re not making it anymore.’ Let’s make sure this limited resource isn’t cut up and sold off to foreign entities with no stake in our future. My commonsense legislation will protect Missouri farmers and our natural resources for generations to come.”
For more information about Sen. Beck or his legislation, please visit senate.mo.gov/beck.