BSE panic halves beef purchases

February 11, 2002 The Daily Yomiuri (Tokyo)
The amount of beef bought in November averaged 421 grams per family--a nearly 50 percent reduction from the 827 grams during the same period in 2000, according to the Public Management Ministry.

The figures indicate the tremendous influence the outbreak of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)--known as mad cow disease--in Japan has had in curtailing beef consumption.

Statistics also show that the sharp drop in beef purchase due to the BSE panic in 2001 was followed by a 7 percent increase in household purchases of pork and chicken that year.

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