Agricultural land bought by west coast investors

Investment firms owned by Bill Gates have bought thousands of acress of agricultural land in counties in or near WWALS watersheds in south Georgia and north Florida, all above the Floridan Aquifer, near the Alapaha, Alapahoochee, Withlacoochee, and Suwannee Rivers, as part of a nationwide buying spree of a quarter million acres.

Here’s a summary of what we’ve found thus far. Any more recent posts should be found through this search.

These purchases of hundreds and thousands of contiguous acres are all after Bill Gates announced in 2012 he was going to “fix” agriculture in conjunction with Monsanto and Syngenta.

And it’s not just Bill Gates. At least one California Central Valley firm has bought land in Madison County, FL.

We don’t know what these west coast investors are up to, but finding out is a WWALS goal for 2015.

You can support WWALS in reaching its goals by becoming a member today!

The Bill Gates investment companies found so far:

  • Cascade Investments LLC oversees Bill Gates’ fortune.
  • Cascade owns Los Arboles LLC, which changed its name to Cottonwood Ag Management LLC, which has bought land in Echols County, GA. Senior Ag Asset Manager ~ BGI ~ Kirkland,Washington USA 03.25.2014 · Posted in Other / Misc Jobs

    Cottonwood Ag, a privately-owned Agricultural Asset Management Company, a subsidiary of a highly-regarded, multi-billion dollar private investment company, is seeking an exceptional candidate for a Senior Asset Manager position, reporting to the Head of Agriculture. The company manages an agribusiness portfolio both domestically and internationally that encompasses approximately 250k acreas across multiple states with growing …

  • Lakeland Sands LLC (a Georgia partnership) was apparently owned by one of the previous landowners, and has since been used for further purchases in Lowndes County, GA.
  • Lakeland Sands Florida (also apparently owned by previous landowners) has bought additional land in Suwannee County, FL.

We also hear, but have not confirmed, that other investors are buying land and later transfering it to one of the Gates companies.

Lowndes County, GA

Echols County, GA

  • Bill Gates gobbling up Georgia farmland, too

    Most of the southwest Echols County acreage in light blue (sales in the last couple of years) on the first map above by the Tax Assessor shows C/O COTTONWOOD AG Management. That’s the Alapahoochee River winding through from north to south on its way to join the Alapaha River near Jennings, FL, after which the Alapaha River joins the Suwannee River at the border with Suwannee County, Florida….

    Some of that acreage still shows as owned by Coggins Produce Georgia LLC, but c/o Cottonwood Ag Management (with a slightly incorrect address).

Hamilton County, FL

Madison County, FL

  • 28 Bill Gates parcels in Madison County, FL

    More than 1,000 acres through September 2014, in parcels already adding up to more than 250 acres, or in contiguous or nearby parcels that can be combined, all bought by Lakeland Sands LLC….

  • Grimmway of Bakersfield, CA in Madison County, FL

    Grimmway Enterprises, Inc. of Bakersfield, CA bought 1358.44 acres in Madison County, FL, all on 18 April 2014, on both sides of SE Farm Road between Lee and the Withlacoochee River.

Suwannee County, FL