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Shares in Bunge, the world’s largest oilseed processor, jumped as much as 5 per cent on Thursday after reports of preliminary deal talks with Glencore-backed grain trader Viterra.

A potential merger, which was first reported by Bloomberg, would create an agribusiness powerhouse rivalling Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland.

St Louis-based Bunge, which generated $1.6bn in net income last year, buys and sells grains around the world, as well as owning a network of processing and storage facilities.

Viterra, which was formerly known as Glencore Agriculture, previously approached Bunge about a potential deal in 2017. Viterra reported net income of $1bn last year.

Glencore and Bunge declined to comment. Viterra did not respond to a request for comment.

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