Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Congressman Jim Costa (D-CA), and Congressman Rick Crawford (R-AR) led the Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act, which passed the Senate with bipartisan support and will now be included in the Senate version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24). Senator Rounds (R-SD) and Tester (D-MT) led the NDAA amendment in the Senate.
The Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act will protect our national security by prohibiting foreign adversaries from purchasing or controlling U.S. agricultural land and businesses. Our foreign adversaries, specifically Communist China, are purchasing U.S. agricultural land to undermine our food security and gain access to our sensitive military installations. The inclusion of the PASS Act into the NDAA will ensure that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is involved in reviewing foreign acquisition of American agricultural land and businesses and blacklists our foreign adversaries from controlling U.S. agricultural land.
“Food security is national security, and I am proud that the Senate advanced my bill that will stand up against our foreign adversaries as they attempt to assert control over our agriculture industry,” stated Congresswoman Stefanik. “The United States cannot allow malign ownership bids of American assets by Communist China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea to undermine the efforts of our farmers, whose hard work feeds and fuels our communities. We cannot allow our adversaries to control land near our military installations and we cannot cede any ownership of our food supply to those who are actively working against our security interests.”
“Food is a national security issue, and we need to take steps to protect American farmland,” stated Congressman Costa. “The PASS Act will safeguard our food supply chain and ensure American agriculture is operated by American businesses.”
"Agriculture security is national security, and Congress has a duty to protect our food supply and those who produce it from our adversaries. In today’s world, nations like China and Russia are targeting critical American infrastructure not through warfare, but through espionage, cyberattacks, and even acquisition of businesses. It is time to ensure that our nation’s agricultural sector is secure from these attacks as well. I’m pleased to see my colleagues in the Senate give this issue the attention it deserves,” stated Congressman Crawford.
The Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act:
- Prohibits China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea from purchasing U.S. agricultural land and agricultural companies.
- Adds the Secretary of Agriculture as a member of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to consider agriculture needs when making determinations affecting our national security.
- Requires the President to submit a report to Congress on any waiver granted to a prohibited country.
Read the amendment text here.
Next, the Senate will work to pass the NDAA, and the bill will be reconciled with the House-passed NDAA.