Indiana University SPEA Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy University of Pennsylvania AIR American University

Panel Paper: Calorie Labeling in Chain Restaurants and Body Weight: Evidence from New York

Thursday, November 12, 2015 : 8:30 AM
Tuttle Prefunction (Hyatt Regency Miami)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Brandon Restrepo, U.S. Food and Drug Administration
This study analyzes the impact of calorie labeling on body weight and shows that implementation of the policy caused reductions in BMI and the probability of obesity. The analysis uncovers two important sources of heterogeneity in the policy’s impact on body weight. First, the policy had larger impacts in the upper half of the BMI distribution. Second, the impact of calorie labeling is concentrated among individuals with high propensities to eat fast food and to use nutrition information at restaurants. Heterogeneity in sensitivity to calorie information may explain the mixed evidence in previous studies on the policy’s effectiveness.