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French sales of beef dishes drop 45% after horsemeat scandal


Sales of frozen prepared dishes containing beef plummeted by 45 percent in France in the week following the horsemeat scandal, a study showed on Monday.

The study by global consumer information company Nielsen, based on sales records from leading French supermarkets from February 11 to 17, showed a drop of about 300 tonnes in sales of prepared frozen dishes.

The drop represented a loss of about one million euros ($1.3 million), the study said, with the most affected dishes being lasagne (sales down 45 percent), shepherd's pie (down 49 percent) and moussaka (down 52 percent).

The scandal also had an affect on overall sales of frozen prepared foods, with the value of sales down 16 percent.

Products have been pulled from the shelves in more than a dozen European countries after horsemeat was detected in frozen dishes marked as containing beef.