The effect of point-of-purchase nutrition information on consumer choice in fast food restaurants

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Authors

Read, Jessica Lynn

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Publisher

University of Guelph

Abstract

This thesis is an investigation of whether having nutrition information on menu boards in fast food restaurants would make a difference in customers' food choices. A sample of 90 males and 90 females (M=19.36 years) was recruited from a university campus. A 2 x 3 between-subjects experimental design was used with participants assigned randomly to: menus with price only, nutrition information only, or both. There are no differences in total calorie, total fat or total cost chosen across the three groups: price only, nutrition info only, and price+ info groups. Females (M=696.8 kcal) chose lower total calorie options than males (M=875.4 kcal, p<0.001); there was no difference in total fat chosen. Young men may not be worried about weight gain or risk of heart disease from the consumption of high-fat, high-calorie foods, and thus may not use nutrition information. Females tend to choose lower calories overall and lower calorie beverages.

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Keywords

nutrition information, point-of-purchase, consumer choice, fast food restaurants, menu boards

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