Federal Report: China’s Efforts to Strengthen Ag Sector Present Risks to U.S.

May 31, 2022

A federal report out last week issued a blunt warning: China’s efforts to strengthen its agriculture sector and food security, sometimes through illicit means, present several risks to U.S. economic and national security.

The report was assembled via the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC). The USCC was created by Congress in 2000 with the legislative mandate to monitor, investigate, and submit to Congress an annual report on the national security implications of the bilateral trade and economic relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, and to provide recommendations, where appropriate, to Congress for legislative and administrative action.

Within the 27-page report is a breakdown of China’s failure to secure enough domestic production to feed its swelling population and its subsequent shift to nations like the U.S. to acquire farmland, livestock, equipment, and intellectual property. Specifically, it evaluates the motivations behind China’s agricultural investments, including challenges to food production and efforts to reduce import reliance, conserve farmland, and modernize agricultural technologies. It then examines the main areas of Chinese investment in the United States, including land, livestock, grains, and relevant infrastructure, like agricultural equipment and technology. Finally, the report presents considerations for lawmakers regarding further Chinese integration in the U.S. agriculture sector. 

House Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Rep. Glenn Thompson told Fox News "food security is national security" and said the USCC report showed the U.S. needs to take tougher stances to safeguard U.S. intellectual property and the agricultural industry.

To read the full report, visit the USCC website.