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Fufeng debate featured on New York Times front page as local and national conversation continues around deal

A lit up Home of Economy sign topped the newspaper's front page alongside the headline "New Corn Mill Brings Jobs, and Fears of China."

Fufeng front page.jpg
The Fufeng debate is featured on the New York Times front page.
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GRAND FORKS — The New York Times' front page on Sunday featured a familiar location for residents of Grand Forks.

A lit-up Home of Economy sign topped the newspaper's front page alongside the headline "New Corn Mill Brings Jobs, and Fears of China." The months-long debate about the proposed corn milling plant from Fufeng Group, a China-based agribusiness, has reached a national level at times, as a few U.S. senators have called for a deeper look at the plant, which would sit about 12 miles away from Grand Forks Air Force Base.

The story also has been a topic of discussion for other national outlets recently, including CNBC and Fox News.

The Times' 2,600-word story includes a number of photos of local scenes, including the Home of Economy sign, as well as photos of proponents and opponents of the Fufeng proposal. A photograph of Mayor Brandon Bochenski, who favors the project, is included, as well as opponents Ben Grzadzielewski, Frank Matejcek and Katie Dachtler.

The Times piece notes that "what local politicians lauded as an unambiguous win soon divided Grand Forks. ... Within a few months, the debate had reached Capitol Hill, and Grand Forks, population 59,000, had revealed just how mistrustful and dysfunctional America’s relationship with China has become."

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The Herald has been covering the deal since the beginning, read the Herald's most recent coverage of the debate below. Readers can also find all of the Herald's stories at grandforksherald.com/businesses-organizations/fufeng.

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A hearing was held Thursday, Aug. 18, giving attorneys from both sides a chance to speak.
The legislation would bar entities linked with China and a handful of other countries from buying land or agricultural business in the United States, building on a similar proposal sponsored by Rep. Dusty Johnson in the House last month. Rounds linked the protection of American agriculture to national security, pointing to the controversy over Fufeng Group's purchase of land near Grand Forks Air Base.
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I am uncomfortable about China building a corn plant so close to Grand Forks Air Force Base.
With the possible creation of a corn mill in Grand Forks we will lose the spirit of what North Dakota means.
Rebecca Osowski is firmly against the proposed corn mill, while Tricia Lunski has grown more comfortable with the idea since the June election.
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Why would anyone want to do business with such an adversary?
What is really at stake is our ability to have control as citizens of this town.
Public comment lasted for more than an hour on Monday and was nearly entirely focused on the proposed Fufeng plant, which has generated controversy throughout the year after it was announced late in 2021

Related Topics: FUFENG
Our newsroom occasionally reports stories under a byline of "staff." Often, the "staff" byline is used when rewriting basic news briefs that originate from official sources, such as a city press release about a road closure, and which require little or no reporting. At times, this byline is used when a news story includes numerous authors or when the story is formed by aggregating previously reported news from various sources. If outside sources are used, it is noted within the story.
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