City’s Study Says Calorie Postings Do Make a Difference

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Remember that early study of calorie postings that indicated that customers actually ordered slightly more calories than they did pre-postings? Well, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has now conducted its own study of about 22,000 diners, and the results are more favorable. Though only 15 percent of customers used the calorie information, they ended up ordering 152 fewer calories at hamburger chains and 73 fewer calories at sandwich chains compared to those who didn’t (56 percent of customers never saw the postings).

USA Today also notes that according to the study, the calories purchased dropped at nine chains, including significant drops at McDonald’s, KFC, and Starbucks (keep in mind, though, that chains like KFC have introduced lower-calorie options such as the grilled chicken they’re giving away today). Expect Marion Nestle to say “I told you so” very soon, and in the meantime, brace yourself for the next trend in food labeling: carbon-footprint ratings!