It is a common assumption that, when left with a choice between a healthy snack such as a fruit or some vegetables or fries, children (and most of the times their paìrents as well…) would choose the latter. A new study recently published in the Journal of the Association for Consumer Research and focused on the experiences of the Disney World restaurants is showing this could not always be the truth.
The study was conducted in the 145 restaurants located in Walt Disney World, in Orlando, Florida, and it provided some very interesting data:about half of diners opted to keep the healthier option. According to the data for the years 2010-2012 Disney provided to the University of Colorado Anschutz Health and Wellness Center, 48% and 66% of guests accepted healthy default sides and beverages, respectively. The healthy defaults reduced calories (21.4%), fat (43.9%) and sodium (43.4%). Disney further reported that improving the nutritional quality of the meals did not affect the consumer cost of the meals.
While these results were obtained in a theme park setting they may have broader applicability and may encourage other restaurants to try the opt-out approach for making healthier choices easier for consumers.” Says lead author, John C. Peters.