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Dicker: Is Pork a Natural Resource?

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- I was talking to Jim Cramer today about Wednesday's sale of meat producer Smithfield Foods (SFD) to Chinese food company Shuanghui International for $4.72 billion dollars.

My issue with the buyout is not one of value or share price. It is about a fairly obvious "resource war" that has been emerging from the Chinese, who have been slowly entering American commodity markets and buying up U.S. natural resources.

This trend is most evident in oil and gas where the two largest Chinese energy companies have bought billions in assets in oil and gas. Cnooc (CEO) has entered into two major joint venture deals with natural gas company Chesapeake (CHK) in the Niobrara and Eagle Ford shale formations, paying more than $3 billion for the assets, and Chinese mega-cap Sinopec (SNP) recently followed suit, buying half of Chesapeake's Mississippi Lime assets for $1.02B in cash.

These deals have come on the heels of the monster buy of Canadian oil giant Nexen by Cnooc for $15.1B, which closed in February.

There has been limited pushback on the increasing ownership of American and Canadian energy assets since Cnooc ended its pursuit of California energy company UNOCAL in 2005. But since that proposed deal was met with protest and quashed, several others have closed without a hitch.

The United States still represents a cornucopia of natural resources that no other nation can match in grains, energy and metals. Is there a line that should be drawn in the sale of these assets to foreign nations? And in the case of Smithfield, is home-grown pork and chicken another national resource that no outside entity should own?

I discuss this idea with Jim in the video above.

At the time of publication the author had no position in any of the stocks mentioned.

This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

Dan Dicker has been a floor trader at the New York Mercantile Exchange with more than 25 years of oil trading experience. He is a licensed commodities trade adviser.

Dan is currently President of MercBloc LLC, a wealth management firm and is the author of "Oil's Endless Bid," published in March of 2011 by John Wiley and Sons.

Dan Dicker has appeared as an energy analyst since 2002 with all the major financial news networks. He has lent his expertise in hundreds of live radio and television broadcasts on CNBC, Bloomberg US and UK and CNNfn.

Dan obtained a bachelor of arts degree from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1982.

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