Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Congressman Rick Crawford (R-AR) are introducing the Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act which will protect our national security by preventing foreign adversaries from taking any ownership or control of the United States’ agriculture industry.
As a response to reports of China threatening America’s food supply by acquiring U.S. farmland and agriculture companies, this bill will ensure the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is fully involved in reviewing our foreign adversaries’ acquisition of American companies that may affect our agriculture sector.
“Food security is national security, and I am proud to stand up against our foreign adversaries as they attempt to exploit any potential vulnerability and assert control over our agriculture industry,” Stefanik said. “The United States cannot allow malign ownership bids of American assets by China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea to undermine the efforts of our farmers, whose hard work feeds and fuels our communities. Especially as we witness the devastating impact of a supply chain crisis, the United States cannot cede any ownership of our food supply to those who do not share our security interests.”
“Adversarial nations, like China, continue to threaten our homeland, using tactics like buying American agriculture companies and stealing agriculture research to undermine our economy,” Crawford said. “Washington must realize that agriculture security in national security, and we have a duty to protect our food supply and those who produce it. I’m proud to work with Rep. Stefanik to draw attention to this critical threat and seek to defend American agriculture.”
The Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act:
- Blacklists China, Russia, Iran and North Korea from purchasing U.S. agriculture companies,
- Includes agriculture and biotechnology related to agriculture as critical infrastructure,
- Adds the Secretary of Agriculture as a standing member of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to consider agriculture needs when making determinations affecting our national security, and
- Requires reporting from the Secretary of Agriculture on the risk of foreign purchases of agriculture companies to the American agriculture sector.
Representatives Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), Austin Scott (R-GA), and Dusty Johnson (R-SD) joined Stefanik and Crawford in cosponsoring this legislation.
Read full bill text here.