In conclusion, the use of restaurant hygiene grade cards in Los Angeles has been a great success. By increasing the provision of information to consumers, powerful economic incentives are created for restaurants to improve hygiene, leading to a significant improvement in public health outcomes. Moreover, because the DHS already perform inspections, the grade cards create negligible additional cost for the government.Economists tend to perceive many food safety issues as information failures -- the problem is that sellers know something about the quality of the product that buyers don't know. The delightfully non-bureaucratic solution to many information failures is to make sure that customers get the information they deserve.
So when are we going to get nutrition information for restaurants? Currently, leading companies such as McDonald's and Subway provide such information on the internet and frequently on information sheets available in-store upon request. In the past, for different reasons, we happened to report in U.S. Food Policy that Fuddruckers and Quizno's (also here) appear to hide much of their nutrition profile from their customers. In the case of Quizno's, I wrote management to ask for nutrition information with no success. Do you think nobody cares? Think again! An informal review suggests that the two most frequent search items that lead people to read U.S. Food Policy -- bringing perhaps a couple dozen hits daily -- are "Quizno's nutrition" and "Fuddruckers nutrition."
Go ahead, Fuddruckers and Quizno's. Please take my traffic away. Establish nutrition information sites to provide customers with much-desired nutrition information for your whole product line. Maybe they'll stop reading further down the list of results on their search engine and never look here for opinion and commentary.