Agribusiness

In doing some Internet research I came across an agribusiness company that was new to me.

Bunge

It caught my eye because I’ve not spent much time looking at agribusinesses…and their website was like visiting a foreign land.

Yes, I work with farmers. Yes, I care about ‘the environment’.

But I do not understand? What are they, Bunge, doing? They have all of this information about corporate responsibility, sustainability, etc.  While reading, you realize they have enormous negative impacts…and they are ‘feeling good’ about starting to change those impacts.

How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis

A perhaps narrow-minded (a number of reasons for food cost increases), but still informative article on commodity price increases. If you believe what it reports, it is a startling commentary on shortsided human greed. I’m interested to hear any other insights.

The money tells the story. Since the bursting of the tech bubble in 2000, there has been a 50-fold increase in dollars invested in commodity index funds. To put the phenomenon in real terms: In 2003, the commodities futures market still totaled a sleepy $13 billion. But when the global financial crisis sent investors running scared in early 2008, and as dollars, pounds, and euros evaded investor confidence, commodities — including food — seemed like the last, best place for hedge, pension, and sovereign wealth funds to park their cash. “You had people who had no clue what commodities were all about suddenly buying commodities,” an analyst from the United States Department of Agriculture told me. In the first 55 days of 2008, speculators poured $55 billion into commodity markets, and by July, $318 billion was roiling the markets. Food inflation has remained steady since.

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