ADM said it's not pursuing a bid.

Archer Daniels Midland Co.  (ADM) denied reports it's considering buying Unilever Plc's (UL) spreads business Monday, Oct. 2, Reuters reported.

British newspaper The Times had previously said ADM was plotting a move to buy Unilever's spreads unit, which includes Flora and Stork margarines. ADM said in a statement it's not pursuing a bid.

The agricultural trader and its competition have recently increased investments in high-margin businesses including food ingredients and natural flavorings in a bid to offset slowing revenue from core grain trading and processing operations. ADM benefitted from that move in the second quarter of this year, when strong margins in sweeteners and starches units boosted earnings.

Shares of ADM traded higher 0.26% to $42.62 Monday. Unilever shares were close to flat.

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