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French scoff at restaurant food packs

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Food lovers may put France on a pedestal, but microwaved or pre-packaged dishes have become so common in restaurants that authorities are introducing a new "homemade" label for chefs cooking meals from scratch. 

From Tuesday, French restaurants will be able to hang up a "homemade" logo for all to see if the in-house chef makes everything him- or herself, or next to specific dishes on the menu, according to a decree published Sunday in the official government gazette.

The move comes in response to concerns that the country's prized gastronomic reputation is being damaged by substandard eateries as many restaurants serve boil-in-a-bag or microwaved ready meals as restaurant-quality cuisine.

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