UPDATE 1-China urges pig farms to restock amid worries over pork supply, swine fever

* China pork prices "very likely" to rise in H2 -govt official

* But does not expect them to climb in run up to Lunar New Year

* Wants pig farmers to restock quickly

* China battling African swine fever, has culled 900,000 pigs (Recasts; adds comment, detail)

BEIJING, Jan 16 (Reuters) - China's pig farmers should quickly replenish their herds, a government official said, as the world's biggest pork producer looks to curb price rises for the meat expected to bite later this year in the wake of African swine fever outbreaks.

GRAINS-Soybeans edge up from two-week low, but trade fears cap gains

* Soybeans under pressure from U.S.-China trade war * Corn rebounds from 6-week low, wheat firms 0.4 pct By Colin Packham SYDNEY, Jan 16 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures rose 0.5 percent on Wednesday, rebounding from a two-week low in the previous session, although gains were checked amid concerns over a prolonged trade war between Washington and Beijing. Corn rose 0.6 percent, rebounding a six-week low touched on Tuesday, while wheat also firmed. The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade rose 0.5 percent to $8.97-1/4 a bushel by 0431 GMT,

China says pork prices likely to rise in second-half of year

BEIJING, Jan 16 (Reuters) - Pork prices in China are very likely to rise in the second half of 2019, but will not see major volatility before the Lunar New Year holiday beginning in early February, an agriculture ministry official said on Wednesday.

Tang Ke of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs told a briefing in Beijing that African swine fever in China had so far had a limited impact on prices.

Low pork prices in some parts of the country have led to liquidation by small farmers and slow restocking, an analyst told Reuters on Tuesday.

GRAINS-Soybeans edge higher, rebound from two-week low

SYDNEY, Jan 16 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures edged higher on Wednesday, rebounding from a two-week low in the previous session, although gains were checked amid concerns that talks to ease a Sino-U.S. trade war will break without a meaningful deal. FUNDAMENTALS * The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade rose 0.4 percent to $8.97 a bushel by 0121 GMT, having closed down 1.1 percent on Tuesday when prices hit a $8.93 a bushel - the lowest since Jan. 2. * The most active corn futures were up 0.5 percent at

USTR promises exclusion process for higher tariffs if China talks fail

By David Lawder

WASHINGTON, Jan 15 (Reuters) - U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has assured lawmakers that companies will be able to request exclusions on tariffs on $200 billion worth of goods under discussion with Beijing if talks do not yield a deal by the March 2 deadline.

LIVESTOCK-Cattle futures hit contract highs on winter storm forecast

By Michael Hirtzer CHICAGO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Live cattle futures rose to life-of-contract highs at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on Tuesday, lifted by worries that severe winter weather could prompt beef packers to pay higher prices for animals in the U.S. Plains, traders said. Technical buying and short-covering also buoyed cattle prices while lean hog futures finished narrowly mixed as some contracts were pressured by technical selling. CME February live cattle settled up 1.525 cents at

RPT-UPDATE 3-U.S. trade chief saw no progress on key issues in China talks -Senator

(Repeats to additional subscribers, no changes to text)

By Humeyra Pamuk

WASHINGTON, Jan 15 (Reuters) - United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer did not see any progress made on structural issues during U.S. talks with China last week, Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley said on Tuesday as plans emerged for higher-level discussions at the end of January.

Brazil's 2018 halal food exports may hit $5bn -certification firm

SAO PAULO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Brazilian halal food exports grew about 10 percent in 2018, the country's largest halal certification firm said on Tuesday, despite fallout from a food sector scandal and a truckers' strike that disrupted meat production last year.

FAMBRAS Halal estimates sales of Brazilian halal food, including chicken, beef, honey and cheese, rose to almost $5 billion in the period despite the industry's multiple woes, it said in a statement.

GRAINS-Soybeans sink on concerns about U.S.-China trade talks

* U.S. officials see no progress on key China trade issues

* Stronger dollar, technical selling weigh on grains

* Longer term forecast projects rains in dry areas of Brazil (Adds closing prices)

By Karl Plume

CHICAGO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures fell for the third time in four sessions on Tuesday on worries that the United States and China remain far apart in resolving a bitter trade fight that has slashed U.S. soy imports by the world's top buyer.

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