2021 Land Report: Who owns probably the most land in america?

America’s main landowners added lots of of hundreds of acres to their holdings final 12 months. That’s one of many many takeaways from the 2021 Land Report 100, which is compiled annually by Land Report journal. Now in its fifteenth version, this landmark examine tracks the various array of farmers, ranchers, forest house owners, entrepreneurs, and traders who personal at a minimal 243.75 sq. miles. As time has confirmed, this possession determine is a transferring goal — and it retains transferring up.

Within the examine’s first 12 months, 2007, the founding father of Burt’s Bees, Roxanne Quimby, certified for the No. 100 slot with 75,000 acres of Maine timberland. In 2021, the rock-bottom determine to affix this membership was greater than double that quantity: 156,000 acres. And there are some particular standards that should be adopted, too. Solely home holdings might be counted, and possession should be deeded, not leased. In any other case, No. 100 on the checklist — Nevada’s Ellison Household — could be within the high 10. That’s as a result of the Ellisons’ cattle kingdom in Elko and Lander Counties consists of greater than 2 million acres of leased federal lands. However as a result of they maintain title to 156,000 acres, that’s how they ranked.

Who’s the No. 1 landowner in america?

Land Report cover with a older white man with white hair and green jacket

Photograph credit score: Land Report

On the high finish of the Land Report 100, a wholly completely different story emerged. In 2021, California’s Emmerson Household, house owners of Sierra Pacific Industries (SPI), acquired 175,000 acres in Oregon from Seneca Jones Timber. That transaction, which was introduced on October 1, raised the household’s holdings to greater than 2.33 million deeded acres.

The inspiring story of the household’s patriarch, Purple Emmerson, is the journal’s cowl story and the featured profile within the 2021 roundup. In 1949, Emmerson started his profession within the wooden merchandise trade when he teamed up together with his father to run a leased mill in northern California that had been sitting idle. Seventy-two years later, the 92-year-old continues to be on the job, officing at SPI’s headquarters simply down the corridor from his sons, George and Mark, SPI’s chairman and CEO, respectively. His daughter, Carolyn Dietz, runs the household’s Sierra Pacific Basis, which has distributed nearly $34 million to group applications and scholarships.

Different high landowners

Liberty Media Chairman John Malone ranked No. 2 with 2.2 million acres of ranchland out West and timberland holdings within the Northeast. Washington’s Reed Household ranked No. 3 with 2.1 million acres. CNN Founder Ted Turner ranked No. 4 with 2 million acres. Los Angeles Rams’ proprietor Stan Kroenke ranked fifth with 1,627,500 acres. In recent times, Kroenke Ranches has grow to be a serious participant within the renewable vitality sector and is on observe to have the ability to energy greater than 1 million households.

With nearly 269,000 acres, Invoice Gates retained his rating as America’s largest non-public farmland proprietor. However as a substitute of what he purchased, of notice in 2021 was what Microsoft’s cofounder didn’t purchase: Easterday Farms and Ranches. The in depth operations in japanese Washington had been on the middle of a megamillion-dollar rip-off that defrauded Tyson Meals, amongst others. At a chapter courtroom public sale, Farmland Reserve paid $209 million, outbidding an funding firm owned by Gates by $1 million.

A field of sugar cane growing at Florida Crystals

Photograph credit score: Courtesy of Florida Crystals

Lastly, one of many nation’s most revolutionary agricultural operations was the topic of an in-depth profile within the 2021 Land Report 100. Over the past 50 years, the Fanjul Household, house owners of Florida Crystals, have developed a rare land administration program that blends cutting-edge know-how with Mom Nature. On the one hand, GPS know-how is used to boost laser leveling and the creation of furrows on the household’s 190,000 acres in South Florida. And alternatively, some 600 fowl packing containers home the barn owls the corporate depends on to curb losses to rats whose fondness for sugarcane can have a substantial affect on harvest.

The 2022 High Landowners within the Land Report 100:

  1. The Emmerson Household – 2.33 million acres
  2. John Malone – 2.2 million acres
  3. Reed Household – 2.1 million acres
  4. Ted Turner – 2.0 million acres
  5. Stan Kroenke – 1.627 million acres

An owl flies out of a bird box at Florida Crystals

Photograph credit score: Courtesy of Florida Crystals

Editor’s notice: Eric O’Keefe unveiled the Land Report 100 on the 2022 Land Expo in Des Moines, Iowa on January 11, 2022.

The Land Report

Eric O’Keefe is the editor of The Land Report, the journal of the American landowner. See LandReport.com.

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