The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has enacting restaurant food safety grading. Beginning in July, consumers will be able to see how a restaurant fared on its most recent health inspection, simply by glancing at the letter grade in the front window or vestibule. Foodborne illness sickens 76 million Americans each year, and 40 percent of those illnesses are linked to restaurant food.
Los Angeles has been doing restaurant grading for more than 10 years and has been seeing positive results — including a documented 20 percent decrease in hospitalizations due to foodborne illness. With cities on both coasts now providing food safety information to consumers, the Center for Science in the Public Interest questions why all cities are not providing such information.