Lucas, Fudge Introduce Legislation Increasing Scrutiny of Foreign Investment in Agricultural Businesses

Apr 17, 2020

Cheyenne, OK  – Today, Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03) and Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (OH-11) introduced the Agricultural Security Risk Review Act, formally placing the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary as a member of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). The Agricultural Security Risk Review Act ensures that CFIUS is operating effectively and efficiently to determine if a transaction, including agricultural, threatens to impair the national security of the United States.

“I am proud to be introducing this important piece of legislation with my good friend, Congresswoman Fudge, that works to ensure that foreign investment in our nation’s agricultural sector is given the amount of scrutiny needed to protect and maintain our national security,” said Congressman Frank Lucas.

Congressman Lucas continued“I’ve always known that food security is a vital part of our national security but in the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans have been able to see that firsthand. I believe that foreign investment in our nation’s food supply chain deserves increased scrutiny and that’s why I am introducing this important piece of legislation today.”

“The safety and resilience of America’s food supply is critical to feeding our population, and therefore the security of our nation,” said Rep. Fudge.

“Despite increasing foreign investment in U.S. agriculture, the U.S. Department of Agriculture lacks a permanent seat at the table with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States’ review of foreign transactions.  By formally including the Secretary of Agriculture on the Committee, the Agricultural Security Risk Review Act ensures the availability of USDA’s expertise in the security risk analysis of all foreign investments, including those involving our nation’s food supply.”

The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) is an interagency committee that reviews potential national security threats of foreign investment in the United States. CFIUS consists of nine members, chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury, and includes the Secretaries of State, Defense, Homeland Security, Commerce, and Energy, the United States Trade Representative, the Attorney General, and the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

CFIUS members informally screen proposed foreign investments into the United States before launching a formal review.

In order for the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to be included in investigations, the Secretary of the Treasury must designate USDA as a part of the review. Without this designation, USDA does not participate in any of the review process and is not consulted in the CFIUS recommendation to the President.

Foreign ownership of U.S. farmland and agricultural businesses has steadily increased. The growing concentration of foreign investment in the U.S. agricultural sector should necessitate that expert analysis of this sector be available to the Committee. CFIUS has the authority to review food and agricultural transactions to ensure the safety and resiliency of U.S. food supply but lacks the agricultural expertise of USDA in the review process.



Recent Posts

Feb 21, 2024

Lucas Stands Up for Oklahoma Beef Producers

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03) joined an effort to halt the Biden Administration’s rule allowing for the importation of fresh Paraguayan beef, which has historically been affected by the viral foot-and-mouth disease. The USDA’s most recent inspection of cattle in Paraguay was nearly a decade ago.  Congressman Lucas (OK-03) joined Rep. Ronny Jackson’s (TX-13) joint resolution […]

Feb 20, 2024

Lucas: USDA fails to deliver support to Oklahoma farmers.

Washington, DC – At today’s House Agriculture Committee hearing, Congressman Lucas questioned Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack over the Biden Administration’s failed Emergency Relief Program (ERP). Congressman Lucas noted that producers in Oklahoma were feeling the negative affects of the ERP 2022 program. Secretary Vilsack questioned this claim, prompting Congressman Lucas to defend his constituents. Click here or […]

Feb 6, 2024

Secretary Yellen Dodges Basel Endgame Questioning

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Lucas followed up with Secretary Yellen on whether Treasury has discussed the impact of the Basel Endgame proposal with the Federal Reserve. When asked a straightforward question on the detrimental impact of the proposal, Secretary Yellen had no answer. February 6, 2024 Lucas: “Are you concerned that the proposal will undermine the […]