Arkansas has instructed Syngenta to divest 160 acres (65 hectares) of farmland in the US state within two years, as reported by Tom Polansek for Reuters.
Syngenta expressed disappointment and characterized the decision as "shortsighted," with potential negative consequences for Arkansas farmers. I Photo: Syngenta
This directive comes due to the company's Chinese ownership and has elicited a strong response from the global seed producer.
US farm groups and lawmakers are increasingly scrutinizing foreign land ownership, driven by concerns about national security. "This is a matter of loyalty," stated Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders at a press conference.
In response, Syngenta expressed disappointment and characterized the decision as "shortsighted," with potential negative consequences for Arkansas farmers.
The company currently holds approximately 1,500 acres (610 hectares) of US land dedicated to research, development, and regulatory trials for products used by US farmers, as noted by spokesman Saswato Das.
Das emphasized, "Our team in Arkansas comprises Americans, led by Americans, who are deeply committed to serving the needs of Arkansas farmers." Syngenta has maintained ownership of the Craighead County site for 35 years.
This directive marks Arkansas' first enforcement action under a state law passed earlier this year, which restricts certain foreign entities from acquiring or retaining land.
China is among the prohibited entities due to its classification under US arms export controls known as the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), as stated by Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin.