Microsoft founder Bill Gates is expanding its farmland portfolio. According to MoneyWise, Gates just received approval to finalize the purchase of 2,100 acres of farmland in North Dakota. He will reportedly shell out $13.5 million for the land owned by the potato growers Campbell Farms.
Gates faces several challenges in his attempts to acquire the land. The public wasn’t thrilled to learn about the news, while many believed the purchase was against a Depression-era law that forbids “corporations or limited liability companies from owning farmland.”
Attorney General Drew Wrigley looked into the matter and decided this particular land sale compiles with the law as Gates will buy it through an individual trust and then lease it back to farmers.
“If it complies with state law, the matter goes forward,” said Wrigley about the approval process. “If not, they’re informed they’re going to have to divest of the land.”
Despite coming from a tech background, Bill Gates has taken a keen interest in farmland in recent years. It is estimated that he currently owns around 269,000 acres of farmland across 19 states. One of the world’s richest people owns 69,071 acres in Louisiana alone and is the largest private farmland owner in the nation.