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Originally published August 20 2008

Investment Powerhouse Goldman Sachs Buying Up Poultry Farms in China

by Barbara L. Minton

(NaturalNews) Corporate ownership of world food sources may be shifting into high gear. Goldman Sachs, the private equity investment bank of the ultra wealthy and powerful, has announced that it's in the race to scoop up assets related to food production. Its latest investment is $300 million in Chinese chicken farms.

U.S. based Goldman recently announced it has acquired full ownership of 10 poultry farms on the mainland of China for $300 million, according to Frederick Yeung, reporter for South China Morning Post. The farms are in the Hunan and Fuijan provinces. This move helps fortify Goldman's position in the mainland livestock industry.

Although Goldman bought the farms outright, they will not be involved in their daily operations which are to be outsourced to third parties. According to Yeung, the investment bank will maintain control of the livestock prices.

The purchase is seen by many as yet another rapacious move by big money to take control of the assets of the underprivileged. It comes on the heels of the collapse of World Trade Organization talks aimed at leveling the trading field and taking steps to protect the trade interests of the third world countries who seek to trade their agricultural products to the first world countries in return for other goods. The talks fell apart when the wealthier countries refused to compromise their agricultural subsidies.

The Chinese are showing themselves to be respectful of their farmers. The People's Bank of China has recently raised its commercial bank loan allocations to support small farmers and their workers.

In 2006, Goldman won a bid to purchase a 100 percent stake in meat and poultry group Henan Shuanghui but the deal later ran into trouble with the Chinese government who want to maintain tight control over foreign investment in the assets of the country. Goldman already holds a 13 percent stake in China Yurun Food Group, the country's second meat and poultry processor whose profits are surging.

The entrance of the investment banking company into commodity ownership comes at a time when investors' enthusiasm for commodities is cooling. Many commodity indices are experiencing corrections of 15 percent or more from their all time highs earlier this summer. The commodity price correction has most notably shown itself in lower gasoline prices. Goldman's latest purchase suggests that this correction could be short lived.

Goldman Sachs provides a range of investment banking, securities, and investment management services to corporations, financial institutions, governments, and high-net-worth individuals worldwide. It is considered the premier investment house on Wall Street and the representative of the 'smart money'. Goldman Sachs is a public company whose shares trade on the New York Stock Exchange.

Investment guru and former hedge fund manager Jim Rogers says the most valuable investments on the mainland of China are its agricultural products. Rogers was one of the first to predict the bull market in commodities that began at the turn of the century. He sees commodity investments by the super rich as continuing for many years to come. Rogers has a history as a knowledgeable citizen of the world. He and has his family have become recent ex-patriots to mainland China, since that's where he sees the action for the foreseeable future. His books on investing in commodities are available from Amazon and others.

About the author

Barbara is a school psychologist, a published author in the area of personal finance, a breast cancer survivor using "alternative" treatments, a born existentialist, and a student of nature and all things natural.

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