Sales of fresh turkey have plummeted again and are now just over half the level they were before the outbreak of avian flu at Bernard Matthews' Holton factory.

Latest Nielsen figures show sales in the week ending 17 February fell to £1.8m, 46% down on two weeks earlier, before news of the outbreak emerged. In the week immediately after the outbreak sales were down 30%. The new figures relate to the week after Defra vets confirmed the disease had come in a shipment of Hungarian turkey.

Eleni Nicholas, MD of Nielsen UK & Ireland, said the sales figures could yet get worse before they got better.