This study examines the effects of increasing provision of hygiene quality information on consumer assessment of restaurant quality. In July 2010 New York City introduced mandatory hygiene grade cards to be displayed in restaurants. I show that both an A grade and better inspection scores are correlated with higher ratings in food, decor, service and price, with the former having a larger impact. These results suggest that consumers give much credence to the information provided byhygiene grade cards but the underlying scores might not reflect the true hygiene quality of restaurants.
This article was written by Karl Storchmann