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Dale Strong’s bill to protect American ‘food, fiber, and fuel’ from Chinese influence moves forward

U.S. Rep. Dale Strong is continuing his push to secure America’s agricultural interests.

Since being elected to his first term in Congress, Strong (R-Monrovia) has been a critical voice against the influence of China — particularly on American agriculture and farmland.

Last week, Strong announced his Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm Act will be included in a more comprehensive reform study being expedited for advancement by Republican leaders in the Countering Communist China Act.

“The Chinese Communist Party is the one of the greatest national security threats facing the American people,” Strong said. “From the Chinese production of fentanyl coming across our southern border to Chinese companies undermining U.S. trade, the ‘Countering Communist China Act’ rewrites American laws to better deal with this threat.”

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“With the inclusion of my bill, this legislation will prohibit individuals associated with the governments of our foreign adversaries – including China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia – from purchasing or leasing American agricultural land—protecting our food, fiber, and fuel supply chains.” 

He also communicated the staggering increase in Chinese investment into American farmland that has occurred over just a ten year period.

“United States of the Department of Agriculture data shows that Chinese investment in U.S. farmland increased from $81 million in 2010 to $1.8 billion in 2020, much of which is in close proximity to sensitive national security sites,” Strong said. “This presents an enormous threat not only to our food, fiber, and fuel markets, but also to our national security.” 

The North Alabama congressman believes that the time is now for action on the issue.

“We can no longer turn a blind eye to the threat that is posed by a lack of transparency and effective monitoring of who is growing, producing, and marketing our food safety and agriculture products,” said Strong. “My bill and this RSC legislation address these threats directly.” 

“These protections are critical, both to ensure that every American is protected against foreign adversaries and to defend the interests of the millions of American families who make a living feeding our nation and world.”  

The Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm Act would also prohibit individuals associated with the governments of these foreign adversaries from participating in certain U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs.

Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.

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