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CHICAGO: US wheat futures spiked by their daily trading limit on Thursday to their highest since mid-2012 and corn futures rallied to eight-month peaks after Russian forces attacked Ukraine, exacerbating worries over global grain supplies.

Soyoil futures notched an all-time high on concerns about global vegetable oil supplies amid conflict in the major sunflower oil producing region. Soybean futures eased on profit-taking after setting fresh 9-1/2 year highs overnight.

Russian forces invaded Ukraine by land, air and sea, confirming the worst fears of the West with the biggest attack by one state on another in Europe since World War Two.

Russia and Ukraine account for about 29% of global wheat exports, 19% of corn supplies and 80% of sunflower oil exports. Traders worry the conflict could trigger a scramble to replace those supplies.

Ukraine’s military suspended commercial shipping at its ports and Moscow suspended the movement of commercial vessels in the Azov Sea until further notice, though it kept Russian ports in the Black Sea open.

Still, top wheat importer Egypt cancelled its latest purchasing tender after receiving just one offer after the invasion. “With the ports shut down, that takes a big chunk of grain off the global market and that might send more business to the US,” said Ted Seifried, chief agriculture strategist for the Zaner Group.

Chicago Board of Trade May wheat was up its daily 50-cent trading limit at $9.34-3/4 a bushel by 11:58 a.m. CST (1658 GMT), the highest point for a most-active contract since July 2012.

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