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Effects of Healthier Choices on Kid's Menu: A Difference-in-Differences Analysis

  • Li, Shuo
  • McCluskey, Jill J.
  • Mittelhammer, Ron C.

This study evaluates the effect of a quick-service restaurant (QSR) strategy which changes de-fault calorie-dense menu items to healthier options on children’ menu consumption behaviors. A series of difference-in-differences (DID) models are estimated to compare sales between treat-ment and control group restaurants in the Washington State. The results do not provide evidence that adding healthier options causes consumers to make healthier diet choices. This negative re-sult suggests that more proactive interdiction is needed to make an impact on childhood obesity. Government policies such as those that require additional, possibly highlighted, information and/or education are likely to have a greater effect.

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Article provided by Food Distribution Research Society in its journal Journal of Food Distribution Research.

Volume (Year): 43 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 (November)

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Handle: RePEc:ags:jlofdr:158986
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  1. Ginger Zhe Jin & Phillip Leslie, 2003. "The Effect of Information on Product Quality: Evidence from Restaurant Hygiene Grade Cards," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(2), pages 409-451.
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  3. Mancino, Lisa & Todd, Jessica E. & Guthrie, Joanne F. & Lin, Biing-Hwan, 2010. "How Food Away From Home Affects Children's Diet Quality," Economic Research Report 134700, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
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  6. Lin, Biing-Hwan & Frazao, Elizabeth & Guthrie, Joanne F., 1999. "Away-From-Home Foods Increasingly Important to Quality of American Diet," Agricultural Information Bulletins 33733, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  7. Joshua P. Berning & Hayley H. Chouinard & Jill J. McCluskey, 2010. "Do Positive Nutrition Shelf Labels Affect Consumer Behavior? Findings from a Field Experiment with Scanner Data," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 93(2), pages 364-369.
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