International Investments – Similar as Chalk and Cheese

by | Jun 8, 2006 | Archives

* Natural Health Tip – Chalky Alkaline is Good
* Ecuador Real Estate – Cheesy Profits are Good Too
* International Investments – Chalk & Cheese Come Up With Same Investments

Not many farmers up here in Ashe County make enough money from farming to live. Fraser Fir Christmas trees are one big crop that works (though horrible on the environment), but the mountains make other commercial farming difficult.

Yet one great thing about this land and at our farm is the many types of soils. They range from rich humus along the creek banks to red clay on some of the hills. On others we have chalky soils (probably good for grapes though we’ll not get sucked into that one). Our northern facing woods are rich with opportunity for Wild American Ginseng and Goldenseal, plus a number of other medicinal herbs.

One of the keys to good growing is the pH balance of the soil. Alkalinity balance is vital to our health as well as our soil. I was reminded of this when a reader sent me this note.

“Gary, I know you talk about pH and health all the time, but I have never seen it discussed in print until now. Here is a great article. Alan”

The article points out that Linus Pauling, winner of two Nobel Prizes, showed that mineral deficiency and disease go hand in hand.

One reason for this is that minerals help keep an alkaline body pH. It says that loss of energy often comes from your pH being too low or strongly acidic. You are supposed to have a slightly alkaline pH, anywhere between 7.1 and 7.4 roughly. pH 7 is neutral and below 7 is acidic. You need a normal alkaline pH to keep all cells functioning properly.

Imbalances in pH may even be a leading element in the development of cancer. 85% of cancer patients are found to be too acid. When alkalinity is correct, cancer cells can’t grow. Alkaline foods such as most green and leafy green vegetables, tea and seaweed, can help balance pH. Red meat and many high protein foods tend to be acidic. Water can be either acidic or alkaline. Alkaline water can be good for your health.

The article gives clues on ways to prevent many diseases including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer that are related to high-fat and or high-protein diets. It also tells of a small Chinese town of 80,000 population where the residents were extremely long lived. Researchers found that the underground water the residents used to cook food is so alkaline that it smells a strange odor. Alkaline water helps keep the body pH alkaline.

It explains how a majority of diseases can be brought under control by simply adjusting diet to make the body pH alkaline and tells the story of a cancer patient who changed diets and followed a healthy nutritional plan. 28 years later, he died from another cause. Biopsy revealed that there were a lot of cancer cells around the area where the tumor was removed. But the new cancer cells can’t grow into any clinically significant cancerous mass, known as cancer. The patient lived so long peacefully with cancer cells (not cancer) probably because he maintained an alkaline body pH.

You can read the entire article at

Vaidya K.S. Mishra is a master healer in the eight avenues of ayurvedic healing and will help us learn how to have more alkalinity in our systems at our June 16-17-18 course here at the farm. He is a healer with immense healing knowledge to share. This course will be an experience that immerses you in naturally healthy surroundings, such as the pure water, clean air, silence, freedom from electromagnetic radiations, specially prepared food. Join us at Merrily Farms. We only have two rooms left so do not delay. For details go to

Ecuador Real Estate – Cheesy Profits are Good Too

Alkalinity can be helped enormously by eating organic foods. As the world realizes, this it creates many opportunities in Ecuador where they have such good soil. This makes growing organically easier to do. However like here in the Blue Ridge the way one should not to compete head on with farmers who have thousands of acres of totally flat fields. Special areas where you can add value make more sense.

For example, about ten minutes from El Meson de las Flores a doctor friend of ours is running an organic vineyard. We have organic wine tastings with each of our groups. He HHHcurrently produces 10,000 bottles year divided into white, red and rose. He is going to expand to 40,000 bottles and this presents an opportunity.

However this is not all. The doctor has created an organic Swiss cheese factory. On our last trip, Merri and I sat on a broad veranda, looked over lush mountains and enjoy a glass of wine and some of this delicious cheese that is identical to Emmenthal. The doctor even brought a Swiss cheese master in to set up the operation and train the staff. He even built a rock cave with controlled temperatures for the cheese. We do not drink alcohol often nor eat a lot of cheese, but that was a rare treat!

Learning Speaking Spanish is fun! Join us for our Super Thinking – Super Spanish course. Enjoy Ecuador and the sun! See real estate for sale. Visit the winery and cheese factory. Enjoy a wine tasting and shop in the great markets. Laze in the warm thermal pools, all fun ways to learn Spanish. We only have one more space for this class. For details go to

International Investments – Chalk & Cheese Come Up With Same Investments

Jyske Bank, Keppler Asset Management and The Economist are three of my favorite sources of data partly because, like chalk and cheese, they have very different styles.

Last message, based on Jyske’s input, we saw that emerging markets are under pressure as current accounts come into focus. Currencies in countries with large current account deficits (such as the US) are weak. The emerging currencies that have depreciated most in 2006 are those of countries struggling with current-account deficits. According to Jyske Bank, the emerging countries with the best ability to create current account surpluses offer better opportunity now. The best countries based on current account possibilities according to Jyske are listed:

The Philippines
South Korea

Commodity Rich Emerging Markets

One way I zero in on places to invest is by looking for areas where my sources agree. So I tried a cross check on Keppler Asset Management. Note this. The top ten investments in the State Street Global Advantage Emerging Markets Fund (which follows Keppler’s system) are all on Jyske’s list as well:

Investment Country
Lukoil Russia
Petróleo Brasileiro Brazil
Anglo American plc Commodity Rich
Samsung Electronics Co. South Korea
Philippine Long Distance Telephone The Philipines
Gold Fields Ltd. Commodity Rich
AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. Commodity Rich
PTT Public Company Ltd. Commodity Rich (Thailand Gas)
iShares (Taiwan) Inc. Taiwan
Taiwan Semiconductor Manuf. Co. Ltd. Taiwan

Look at the top investments in the fund by country weighting. Again this fund is focused in exactly the countries mentioned by Jyske. Over half the funds invested are in these countries!

Country Percent of the Fund Invested
Korea 12.9%
Russia 12.4%
Philippines 11.5%
Brazil 11.3%
Malaysia 9.0%
Taiwan 8.6%

The State Street Global Advantage Fund invests primarily in emerging equities based on valuations by Keppler Asset Management. The fund’s goal is to outperform the Morgan Stanley Capital Index Emerging Markets Total Return Index over holding periods of 3 to 5 years, with below-average risk.

The Fund buys into a combination of undervalued markets (based on Keppler valuations) and aims to hold them till they become slightly overvalued.

Risk is controlled by focusing on expectation of loss and by investing in undervalued securities with a below-average probability of losing money in the long run.

There you have it. Two of my advisors with very different approaches. But their recommendations end up being very much the same. Take note!

You can get details about Keppler’s valuation system at

US investors cannot invest in the Luxembourg registered State Street Global Advantage Emerging Markets Fund but they can get details on how to invest globally including in the shares and countries above from Thomas Fischer at Jyske Bank. His address is

Until next message, good natural health, global business and international investing to you!


Learn about investing in emerging and major currencies, gold, silver, Ecuador, import-export, overseas markets and more. Join Merri, Thomas Fischer (Copenhagen) and Steve (Ecuador) and me at our next International Business and Investing Made EZ course in North Carolina. Review where to invest and do business now and learn which markets and currencies may be strong in the year ahead. Learn more about Ecuador import and export from Steve. Our May course was overbooked and the September session is filling up fast. Our free accommodations are reserved on a first come first served basis so do not delay! Go to

Here delegates walk at the top of Merrily Farms where the chalky soil and morning mists support an explosion of wildflowers.