Tuesday, April 22, 2008


I came across an article in SmartMoney about agriculture plays that was interesting. I agree with the premise that food is not going to get cheaper and that materials needed to grow food, at least following the large-scale, industrial model, will continue to drive the cost of certain raw materials like fertilizer. The companies the article suggests we invest in are Agrium (AGU), Mosaic (MOS) and Potash (POT). All of these companies produce ingredients for fertilizer. I guess my question boils down to an ethical dilemma: is it ok to invest in a company that you think will make you money even if, principally, you disagree with what it does. I'm not saying that I necessarily disagree with what these companies produce. However, being that I am a proponent of small-scale, farming that uses organic methods of fertilizing and dealing with pests, it is hard for me to be enthusiastic about investing in anything that sells to mega-agribusinesses. Anyway, your thoughts are welcome.


BenD said...

speaking of food... I'm wondering if the push to turn food into fuel is really a good way to go. As you know, I'm interested in alternative fuel sources, but it doesn't appear that growing corn for fuel is not quite as productive as it first appeared. I welcome your thoughts.

On a completely different note, I'm almost done with a David Baldacci novel. It has a very creepy beginning, but now that I'm near the end, I have GOT to find out how it ends. Oh, and I'm also on book 7 of the Limony Snicket Series. At the rate I'm going, I just hope I finish the series before I retire!

Investing Author said...

speaking to wife on the subject (who, as you know, is a crop scientist), she says that there are plenty of things that can be grown and turned into fuel that don't have to be food. I heard someone on NPR talking about using plants that grow on distressed land and turning those into fuel. Clearly, there were some people who didn't think through all of the possible conclusions for using corn-based ethanol.