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Morning round-up, Friday March 20


* FranceAgriMer said on Friday that, by March 16, farmers in the country had completed 40% of the spring barley sowing for this year’s harvest.


This is up from the previous week’s 34%, but much lower than the 97% level recorded for the same week last year.


The farming body added that 63% of already-sown soft wheat had a good/excellent rating by March 16, unchanged from the week before.



* Malaysian palm oil exports for the first 20 days of March reached 654,440 tonnes according to AmSpec Malaysia.


This is down 20.2% on the 819,653 tonnes the country exported during February 1-20.


Palm oil export data from cargo surveyors SGS Malaysia scheduled for March 20 was not available due to the government’s coronavirus outbreak order requiring most businesses to shut down until the end of the month.



* US milk processor, Dean Foods has announced that it has agreed to “mutually terminate” a $425m deal with Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) that would have seen that company buy 44 of Dean’s processing facilities.


It explained that a judge overseeing the agreement had rejected the bidding rules, which were found to favour DFA.


Dean Foods added that DFA, however, would not be withdrawing from the bidding process.



* According Reuters, almost 50 Brazilian agribusiness groups have called on President Jair Bolsonaro and Infrastructure Minister Tarcisio Gomes de Freitas to ensure that ports in the country will continue to operate amid the coronavirus pandemic.


The news service said the group reached out the two officials in a letter motivated by threats from dock workers at the country’s Santos to halt activities.


The group said the move could results in “incalculable” losses to agribusiness supply chains.



* Egypt’s Supply Minister, Ali Moselhy said on Thursday that the country will buy around 3.6m tonnes of wheat from the local harvest at 700 Egyptian pounds ($44.59) per ardeb (150 kilogrammes).


The harvest is scheduled to start next month.



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