“A correction is expected in the domestic oilseed futures due to the outbreak of bird flu in China which could cut demand for animal feeds in Asia,” said Badruddin Khan, associate vice-president of research at Indiabulls Commodities Ltd.
India, a leading supplier of animal feeds in Asia, exports mainly soyameal and rapeseed meal to countries such as Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia. China also used to be a leading buyer of Indian rapeseed meal until last year before it banned oilmeal imports from the south Asian country after finding in them traces of malachite green.
A strain of bird flu that has been found in humans for the first time in eastern China is no cause for panic, the World Health Organization said on Monday, as the number of people infected rose to 24, with seven deaths.
At 0900 GMT, the benchmark Malaysian palm oil contract was down 0.2 percent at 2,396 ringgit ($780) a tonne as traders kept an eye on the development of the bird flu outbreak in China, which could also reduce demand for vegetable oil. US soyabeans were down 0.05 percent at $13.77 per bushel on an improvement in US winter crop ratings.