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Grain traders assess damage to key U.S. facilities shut over Ida

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By Tom Polansek

CHICAGO, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Global crop traders Bunge Ltd and Archer-Daniels-Midland Co said on Monday they are working to assess damage to important U.S. export facilities shut over the weekend by powerful Hurricane Ida.

The storm has disrupted grain and soybean shipments from the Mississippi Gulf, which accounts for about 60% of U.S. exports, at a time when global supplies are tight and demand is strong from China.

Bunge plans to reopen on Tuesday an export elevator in Destrehan, Louisiana, that is the only port-based crushing plant in the Central Gulf Export Corridor, spokeswoman Deb Seidel said. The facility will resume operations after shutting on Saturday, "provided the evacuation order for the parish is lifted and there is not significant damage," she said in an email.

Destrehan is one of Bunge's busiest port facilities, handling soybeans, corn, wheat and sorghum from over 50 grain elevators along the Mississippi River, according to the company's website.

Power is out across Louisiana and Mississippi after Ida crashed ashore.

Archer-Daniels-Midland will assess the damage to four New Orleans grain elevators and port operations it closed over the weekend in preparation for the hurricane, spokeswoman Jackie Anderson said.

"ADM has a vast transportation network and we are making alternate shipping arrangements as necessary to meet customers' needs as we manage through this difficult situation," she said in an email.

Grain trader Cargill Inc said "a few" of its facilities are reporting delayed operations on Monday, though it appears physical damage is minimal. (Reporting by Tom Polansek in Chicago Editing by Matthew Lewis)