Blizzard forces closure of some grain processors and elevators

Source: Reuters | April 11, 2019

The “bomb cyclone” blizzard that hit the United States was limiting the movement and processing of corn, soybeans and wheat around the Midwest and Plains on Thursday.

Grain trader Cargill Inc said it was closing three of its grain handling facilities in Minnesota, two in South Dakota and one in Nebraska on Thursday because of the storm. It also was closing a beef processing plant in Colorado.

The storm had dumped as much as 17 inches of snow on parts of South Dakota and North Dakota by Thursday morning, and more was in the forecast.

The high winds also were deterring farmers from pulling crops out of their on-farm storage facilities even in areas where local elevators and processors were open, grain dealers said.

Tyson Foods Inc, which has some facilities in Nebraska, said its operations were not affected by the storm.

Ranchers around the region were scrambling to keep their herds safe from the snow and wind, which was particularly threatening to young calves.

The storm, which comes as many farmers are still cleaning up from severe floods following a similar storm in March, also threatened to delay planting of U.S. corn and soybeans in the coming weeks as it will leave behind saturated fields after the snow melts. (Reporting by Mark Weinraub and Tom Polansek Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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