Top 100 landowners collectively own 33 million acres

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Seen as a "safe deposit box with a view," the country’s affluent investors are buying up acres at a solid rate, as the top 100 landowners added 700,000 acres in 2012.

A 2013 list of the top 100 landowners includes many recognizable names, from Ted Turner and Stan Kroenke to the Drummond family and Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and CEO.

The 33 million total acres owned by the top 100 account for nearly two percent of U.S. land mass. The top two landowners, John Malone and Ted Turner, each possess over two million acres. There was a four-way tie for #100, each owning 100,000 acres.

Read the 2013 Land Report.

The report is sponsored by Fay Ranches owner Greg Fay. He says the top landowners buy land as a sound investment, but the private land they own also helps produce the food we eat and provides a habitat for fish and wildlife.

"It's refreshing to continue seeing large landowners find value in aggregating their land for conservation and agriculture purposes versus parceling it out and developing it," said land broker Greg Fay, founder of Fay Ranches, which is sponsoring the Land Report 100 for the third straight year and is a longtime supporter of the magazine.

Missouri native Stan Kroenke moved up two spots this year, from number 10 to 8, with the purchase of the historic Broken O Ranch described by Forbes as "one of the largest agricultural operations in the Rocky Mountain West."

Although most of the top 100 landowners house animals on at least some of the land, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos uses his 290,000-acre West Texas ranch as a testing site for his aerospace firm, developing reusable space vehicles.



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RickyD    
SW Okla cotton country. Where the subsidies grow tall!  |  October, 03, 2013 at 02:40 PM

And just think how many subsidy dollars they are stealing from the taxpayer to finance their way of life...

Wendy    
Missouri  |  October, 03, 2013 at 07:58 PM

That is EXACTLY what I was thinking!!!

W.E.    
October, 04, 2013 at 10:25 AM

Ancient wisdom instructs that no individual should own more land than he can walk over in a day, apparently revised by Ted Turner, John Malone and these other 100 land hoarders to "fly over." To love one's land is to care for it oneself, to think of it as one's fatherland: the true meaning of patriotism. Thomas Jefferson's American Dream, which included that kind of patriotism, has now fallen into corruption: Life, liberty, and the pursuit of enough wealth to take land out of the hands of several million Americans who could have worked, cared for and made a living on it. The love of money, on the other hand, is still at the root of all kinds of evil, including starvation and a famine of quality in a country wherein many young folks cannot afford to farm or own any land, not even their own home. Thomas Jefferson also said, “When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe.” America has far surpassed Europe’s corruption. Part of our heritage is European, part Native American, Cherokee. In that heritage, we own no land, but are called to be grateful to Providence for everything that gives us life, to be its caretakers. If these super capitalists truly love their country, they will find a way to help turn over its care to young people who can learn to manage, conserve, care for and use this land wisely instead of hoarding it for their own pleasure, investment and enrichment. If they were patriots in the true sense (which obviously they aren't) they would be humble enough to take some lessons in true land management. For example, they could watch Allan Savory's TED talk on how to renew neglected land through well managed grazing, and visit Wes Jackson's Land Institute.

GLENN S.    
MISSOURI  |  October, 04, 2013 at 12:24 PM

I PERSONALLY KNOW ONE OF THESE RICH LAND OWNERS. GOD NEVER MADE A FINER MAN. HE GOT WHAT HE HAS BY WORKING HOWEVER LONG IT TOOK, HOWEVER MANY HOURS A DAY, WEEK, MONTH OR YEARS THAT WAS NEEDED TO SUCCEED. OH, BY THE WAY, HE ALSO DONATES MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO ALL TYPES OF CHARITIES. ONE OF HIS SPECIAL PROJECTS IS TO HELP YOUNG AGRICULTURE YOUTH WITH SCHLORSHIPS AND WORK PROJECTS. DON'T STAND AROUND WITH YOUR HAND OUT, COMPLAINING THAT LIFE IS NOT FAIR. GOTTA SIGN OFF NOW, GOT WORK TO DO.

steve    
new york  |  October, 06, 2013 at 07:14 AM

The problem is not the amount of land but mega farms collecting millions in tax payer subsidies.

maxine    
SD  |  October, 07, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Aren't jealousy and envy sins? They certainly are not fine, upstanding attributes! I appreciate the person who praises one of the 'top 100' for being a fair minded, giving person, while others find it so easy, and popular, to criticize. Having met a few of the people from the article (available at www.faylandreport.com) and knowing at least one quite well for many years, I realize there are some very caring, hard working families on that enviable list. Many are using the land as it should be used: to produce food, fiber, and building materials and more. All of which benefit people other than themselves. How is it worse for a person to hire people to manage large land holdings that it is to own a small farm and have a hard heart toward those who are perceived to have too much, translated as "no one should have more than I can manage" according to some comments. It is interesting that the 'smallest' holdings in the "top 100" is 100,000 acres, while the largest is about 20 times that amount, at 2.2 Million acres. Obviously, given statistics, there are more small land owners across this nation, farmers or not, who have schemed, cheated, and connived to get their land than there are on this list of the 100 largest landowners in the USA!

Dbark    
Nebraska  |  October, 07, 2013 at 03:29 PM

Biggest subsidy recipient in the workd is the Federal Government. 0 % APR - what a deal, no one to answer to and some of it off the backs of the retired trying to live off of savings. It's what You Know For Sure That Keeps You From Learning. Far far easier to complain than create. Life's waiting -- get on with it.

SNIDLY WHIPLASH    
ne  |  October, 07, 2013 at 03:59 PM

NICELY SAID!!! GOTTA GO..I'M NOT NEARLY DONE FOR THE DAY.

Glen    
Bloomington, IL  |  October, 07, 2013 at 04:10 PM

WE You remember and quota the past well- But I wish to suggest that the best way to be comfortable and successful is to recognize the current reality and plan well for the future. The here and now is not always easy to embrace, but the future will be very difficult for those focusing only on 'what it used to be"

Steve    
Missouri  |  December, 31, 2013 at 03:09 PM

Just what I was thinking. Government owns well over 50% of some states. A century or more ago when land was abundant and the population was a fraction, the government declared unsettled land was theirs. That time has passed, and that land, should be available for homesteading or for sale to The People, not a bunch of bullying, faceless, bureaucrats to control and play with.


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