retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Reuters reports that a new study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation suggests that New York City’s requirement that fast food restaurants post calorie counts on their menus has resulted in one out of six customers noticing the information and acting on it.

According to the story, “Advocates of the law see it as an important measure to help Americans lose weight, as more than two-thirds of the country's citizens are overweight or obese, conditions linked to health problems like high blood pressure and diabetes ... Restaurant chains have begun to include lighter fare on their menus to help customers cut down on fat, sugar and sodium intake. The report cited examples at sandwich chain Cosi, which began using low-fat mayonnaise in its sauces, while coffee chain Starbucks made low-fat milk as its default and Applebee's introduced a menu with dishes under 550 calories.

“All of these changes came after the New York calorie label law came into effect, the study said.”
KC's View:
Some people think these kinds of regulations are dumb and reflective of an activist government sticking its nose where it does not belong. But I think it is a matter of customers having accurate and actionable information and making informed choices.

I’m never quite sure why some people are afraid of that. (Actually, I am pretty sure I know why.) But people and business had better get used to this level of transparency, which is the bare minimum when it comes to creating levels of trust.