April 22, 2015 / 6:08 PM / 5 years ago

GRAINS-Corn touches one-month low, soy slips on bird flu concern

* U.S. corn drops for third day, hovers near one-month low

* Concern U.S. bird flu outbreak to cut feed demand

* Wheat slips as short-covering support fades (Updates prices, adds quote, adds details, changes dateline from HAMBURG/SINGAPORE)

By Karl Plume

CHICAGO, April 22 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures touched a one-month low on Wednesday and soybeans dropped on concern that a bird flu outbreak in the United States may cut feed demand, as forecasts for favorable U.S. planting weather in coming weeks also weighed on prices.

Wheat was slightly lower as early short covering support faded in light trading.

Chicago Board of Trade May corn fell 1/4 cent to $3.72-3/4 a bushel by 12:25 p.m. CDT (11725 GMT) after earlier hitting a low of $3.69-1/4, the lowest since March 18.

May soybeans shed 1-1/4 cents to $9.74 a bushel in a second straight session of declines. CBOT May wheat was a penny lower at $4.99-3/4 a bushel.

U.S. Midwest weather was cooler than normal but largely free of precipitation on Wednesday. Recent rains recharged soils with moisture but have delayed early planting progress.

“The rains have been a great benefit to the dry soils that are starting to get built back up so there’s really not much as far as drought in the heart of the corn belt,” said Karl Setzer, analyst with MaxYield Cooperative.

Concerns that an outbreak of a lethal strain of bird flu in the United States would hurt corn and soymeal demand continued to hang over the market.

“Soybean and corn prices are still suffering today from the psychological impact of the bird flu discoveries in the United States while the markets were also calmed by the latest figures showing good U.S. corn and spring wheat plantings progress in the United States,” said Stefan Vogel, head of agricultural commodity markets research at Rabobank.

Ample global supplies of wheat and limited export demand for high-priced U.S. supplies anchored wheat prices, but a large net short position held by commodity funds in the market had led to short-covering bounces at times.

U.S. wheat was not competitively priced in a recent international tender by Iraq, and U.S. supplies were not included in a large purchase by top importer Egypt over the weekend. (Additional reporting by Michael Hogan in Hamburg, Naveen Thukral in Singapore; Editing by Alison Williams and Gunna Dickson)

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