What menu changes do restaurants make after joining a voluntary restaurant recognition program?
Sommaire de l'article
Programs that recognize restaurants for offering healthful options have emerged as a popular strategy to address the obesity epidemic; however, program fidelity and business responses to such programs are rarely assessed. This study sought to examine how retail restaurants in Los Angeles County chose to comply with participation criteria required by the Choose Health LA Restaurants initiative in the region; the program recognizes restaurants for offering reduced-size portions and healthy children's meals. Menus of all restaurants that joined within 1 year of program launch (n = 17 restaurant brands) were assessed for changes. Nine of the 17 brands made changes to their menus to meet participation criteria for reduced-size portions while 8 of the 10 restaurant brands that offered children's menus made changes to improve the healthfulness of children's meals. Results of this comparative assessment lend support to restaurant compliance with program criteria and menu improvements, even though they are voluntary, representing an important step toward implementing this strategy in the retail environment.