Chicago May wheat futures WK0 were up more than 3% on Monday and hit a one-month high on strong global demand, while premiums for certain grades of milling wheat surged last week. | File photo

North American millers, bakers scramble to satisfy bread-buying binge

CHICAGO/WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) – North American flour mills and bakeries are rushing to boost production as the spread of the new coronavirus leads to stockpiling of staples like bread and pasta. The virus’ spread prompted orders to stay at home in some U.S. states, including New York, California and Illinois last week following similar measures […] Read more

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Canada’s stretched hospitals brace for impact

TORONTO, (Reuters) – Canada’s health system is preparing for an influx of coronavirus patients in the midst of a long-running bed shortage, calling doctors out of retirement and ramping down any treatment that can wait. A shortage of beds during periods of peak demand, like the flu season, is a longstanding problem in the publicly […] Read more

Brazil agribusiness groups seek govt support to keep ports running – letter

SAO PAULO, (Reuters) – A group of almost 50 agribusiness associations has sought support from the federal government to guarantee Brazilian ports continue to operate amid the coronavirus crisis, according to a letter dated March 18 seen by Reuters. In the letter addressed to President Jair Bolsonaro and Infrastructure Minister Tarcísio Gomes de Freitas, farmers […] Read more


Calls for U.S. farm debt, loan relief grows as coronavirus spreads

CHICAGO, (Reuters) – U.S. livestock producers are urging the Department of Agriculture to let them defer or adjust payments for government loans as the coronavirus hits the already struggling farm economy, the largest U.S. farmer trade group said. The American Farm Bureau Federation’s request was made in a March 17 letter outlining a wide swath […] Read more

U.S. under pressure to keep slaughterhouses open during virus outbreak

CHICAGO, (Reuters) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture is seeking to reassure meat producers it will keep slaughterhouses staffed with federal inspectors as fears about potential shutdowns due to the new coronavirus hammer livestock prices and fuel concerns about food supplies, meat industry groups said on early this week. Livestock markets have been hit hard […] Read more


Bayer expects plantings of its genetically modified Xtend soybean seeds to flatline this year for the first time, after three years of strong growth since their launch with an accompanying herbicide.  |  File photo

Bayer’s top seed faces U.S. soybean challenge from Corteva

CHICAGO, WINNIPEG (Reuters) — Bayer’s takeover of Monsanto has been beset by problems, and now a decades-long dominance of the US$4 billion soybean seed market is under threat from rival Corteva Inc. Bayer told Reuters it expects plantings of its genetically modified Xtend soybean seeds to flatline this year for the first time, after three […] Read more

The coronavirus gets its name from the crown-like spikes on its surface.  |  Reuters photo

Virus predicted to have limited impact on China soybean demand

BEIJING (Reuters) — China’s agriculture ministry has said that the coronavirus disease is expected to have limited impact on the country’s soybean consumption and the world’s top consumer will bring in more cargoes from the United States in the coming year. The comments came as the number of coronavirus outbreaks fell sharply in China and […] Read more

The American Farm Bureau Federation's request was made in a March 17 letter outlining a wide swath of concerns, ranging from access to farm labor to supply chain worries of the fast-spreading virus. Many U.S. economic sectors have sought federal government relief. | File photo

Calls for U.S. farm debt, loan relief grows as COVID-19 spreads

CHICAGO (Reuters) – U.S. livestock producers are urging the Department of Agriculture to let them defer or adjust payments for government loans as the COVID-19 virus hits the already struggling farm economy, the largest U.S. farmer trade group said. The American Farm Bureau Federation’s request was made in a March 17 letter outlining a wide […] Read more



Brazil pork, poultry processors not planning to cut back over coronavirus

SAO PAULO, (Reuters) – Brazilian pork and poultry processors have no plans to cut production or place workers on paid leave in response to the coronavirus crisis, meat producer association ABPA said on Tuesday. ABPA Executive Director Ricardo Santin said by telephone the crisis is changing consumer habits but has not had a significant impact […] Read more