Sales of fresh meat have seen a big boost in March and April, as shoppers avoid processed meat after the horsemeat scandal.

Fresh lamb sales were up more than a quarter by volume in the four weeks to 14 April, compared with the same time in 2012.

Fresh beef was up 10% on last year, with mince up 10%, roasting joints up 7%, steaks 5% and stewing up 25%.

In contrast, products directly implicated in the horsemeat scandal have continued to dip, with beefburger sales down 43% and chilled ready meals falling 18% in the same period, said EBLEX.

“Cuts used as ingredients for homemade meals have been doing well following a number of months of decline,” said Nick Allen, EBLEX sector director.

“It indicates that consumers are cooking more meals from scratch, rather than buying ready meals, which is very encouraging for the beef and lamb sector.

“While the horsemeat scandal has rocked the industry, if consumers are buying quality-assured fresh beef, they have reassurance on provenance and traceability. The lasting legacy may also be that people continue to prepare more meals from scratch, rather than purchasing ready meals.”

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