A state lawmaker wants to prevent certain countries from buying any Missouri land and restrict foreign ownership of farmland. 

Rep. Mike Haffner, R-Pleasant Hill, who co-chairs the Missouri Legislature’s Joint Committee on Agriculture., plans to introduce the bill next year.

“It involves two different aspects,” he said.” Number one, it’s a national security issue because we want to make sure that Missourians are safe. Number two, it is an agricultural issue to protect the food supply. So, we’ve got to be able to merge what’s going on with the marketplace with the national security.”

Haffner sponsored a similar bill this year, but it failed to pass.

“That bill prevented any ownership of land across Missouri,” Haffner said. “Not agricultural land, ANY land by the foreign adversaries, yet still protected Missouri agriculture. That framework that we did to prevent any ownership of land in the state is the same template that Florida used.”

The issue is expected to be a priority for Republicans next year.

“We also have to have national security aspects, especially as we live in this age of terror,” said Haffner. “Although it is a foundational constitutional right of the federal government to determine our alliances and treaties, there are some specific holes as it deals with the protection of land.”

There was no testimony for or against the issue during a committee hearing last week.

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