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Retail prices of both domestic and imported beef fell in the week that ended Friday for the second straight week.

The Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry said Monday that despite the drops, retail prices of imported beef are still about 10 percent higher than before Japan imposed an import ban on U.S. beef in late December following the discovery of the first U.S. case of mad cow disease.

“Beef prices are still unstable and we cannot say they are on a declining trend yet,” an official at the Food Safety and Consumer Affairs Bureau said.

The average retail price per 100 grams of domestically produced chilled loin beef was down 5 yen, or 0.7 percent, from the previous week to 682 yen, while that of imported chilled beef fell 2 yen, or 0.5 percent, to 375 yen, the ministry said.

The price of pork loin was down 3 yen, or 1.3 percent, to 237 yen, and that of chicken came to 116 yen, down 1 yen, or 0.9 percent.

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