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Early freeze looms for some crops amid U.S. bumper grain forecast

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Chicago | Reuters -- Maturing corn and soybeans in the northern U.S. Midwest may see an early freeze this weekend that could damage crops still far behind in development, with agronomists saying this year's record harvests may be trimmed. Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin crops are immature after late planting and a cool summer, raising the risk of freeze damage, even though the world's biggest producer of grains is still on track for record corn and bean harvests. The U.S.…
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Cargill suing Syngenta over sale of GM corn banned by China

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Chicago | Reuters -- Cargill, the top U.S. grain exporter, sued a unit of Syngenta in a Louisiana state court on Friday for damages stemming from China's rejection of genetically modified U.S. corn, which Cargill said cost the company more than US$90 million. Minnesota-based Cargill accuses Syngenta of exposing the grain trader to losses by selling the seeds to U.S. farmers before the Swiss company had secured import approval from China, a major buyer. The Agrisure Viptera corn…
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Fertilizer firm ICL files for U.S. listing

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Reuters -- Israel Chemicals Ltd., a Tel Aviv-based maker of fertilizer and specialty chemicals, filed with U.S. regulators to list on the New York Stock Exchange. ICL set a nominal fundraising target of about $522.4 million though an initial public offering of 62 million ordinary shares, it said in a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (all figures US$). ICL, which has exclusive permits to extract potash and bromine from the Dead Sea, is a subsidiary of Israel…
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Rogers Sugar plans layoffs at Montreal refinery

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As a cost-cutting measure in a "very competitive" domestic sugar market, Rogers Sugar plans to cut back its Montreal refinery's workforce by 59 employees. The Montreal plant, run by Rogers subsidiary Lantic, will cut the positions through "layoffs, early retirements and voluntary departures," the company said Wednesday. Canada's sugar industry operates in an open market, Rogers said, "as opposed to most other countries where the market is protected." Lantic is one of two refiners in…
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U.S. grains: Wheat to four-year lows on rising world supplies

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Chicago | Reuters -- U.S. wheat futures fell to a four-year low on Friday and posted their biggest weekly loss since July on weak export prospects and rising global supplies, traders said. Corn futures followed wheat lower but held above the previous day's multiyear lows, and soybeans firmed, underpinned by short covering ahead of forecasts for weekend frost in the Midwest. At the Chicago Board of Trade, most-active December wheat settled down seven cents at $5.02-1/2 per bushel…
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U.S. livestock: Lower cash, beef prices drop CME live cattle

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Chicago | Reuters -- Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures posted losses for a second straight day on Friday, weighed down by lower prices for slaughter-ready or cash cattle and pork at wholesale, traders said. Futures finished off session lows helped by their discounts to this week's cash cattle returns and sentiment that the recent market selloff was overdone, they said. October live cattle ended at 156.275 cents per pound, 1.1 cents lower, and December down 0.45 cent…
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PotashCorp miners rescued after fire

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Reuters -- The last of 96 miners trapped after a fire in PotashCorp's biggest Saskatchewan potash mine was rescued late Thursday, after some of them had spent more than 24 hours underground. The mine halted production when the fire started, and a spokesman for PotashCorp, the world's second-biggest potash producer, said it would assess the situation before deciding when to resume mining. Fire broke out around 4 p.m. local time on Wednesday in a water truck inside PotashCorp's…
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Frost spreads to Sask. as harvest lags

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Winnipeg | Reuters -- Freezing temperatures spread on Friday into Saskatchewan -- Canada's biggest producer of spring wheat and canola -- chilling some of the country's most immature crops. Temperatures dipped to between -3 C and -1 C in parts of Saskatchewan, while other areas stayed above freezing, according to Environment Canada data. Temperatures of -2 C and lower that last for a few hours can damage developing crops, although the extent of harm depends on their stage of growth…
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Sask. wolf hunting pilot starts next week

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A provincial pilot project allowing licensed hunters to help thin out the wolf packs on behalf of livestock producers in predator-ridden northeastern Saskatchewan will get underway Monday (Sept. 15). Saskatchewan's environment ministry said Thursday the pilot wolf hunt will run until March 31, 2015, strictly in wildlife management zone (WMZ) 49, which runs south along the forest from Carrot River to Greenwater Lake Provincial Park, then east along the forest to Hudson Bay. There will be…
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