For those of you that know, you already are aware that I am very health-conscious (perhaps to the point of obsessive ;) ). Anyway, ever since collecting and thoroughly reading through the books in the “Eat This, Not That” series, I have begun to feel quite strongly about restaurants making sure their nutritional information is provided to their patrons and that it is easily accessible. I also like to have a look at the menu before I go to a restaurant. This is not just to watch what I eat, but also to see how much sodium is in a meal, to make sure I’m getting the right balance of protein and carbs as well as for allergy info (if the restaurant provides it; some don’t and this is a whole other issue). There are a few restaurants that still refuse to provide this information, I learned, from the “Eat This, Not That” series. While this series just covers restaurant chains found in North America (with the exception of Tim Horton’s), it does not cover Canadian restaurant chains. I decided to start doing my own investigating. I’ve found different things so far: restaurants with very accessible information, some with information that is hard to find and others where there absolutely no information! It really ticks me off when restaurants don’t provide this information. With all we know about nutrition now AND the growing problem of obesity, especially when it comes to children!
On Saturday, I sent e-mails to three Canadian restaurant chains that do not have their nutritional info posted on their websites (and if they do, I need to hire a detective to find the info for me): Crabby Joe’s, Moose Winooski’s & Moxie’s. This is the e-mail I sent them:
“To whom it may concern:
I have been looking around your website for nutritional information. I am very conscious about what I eat and I also have certain dietary restrictions. I am wondering why you have chosen not to post your nutritional information for your customers? If it does happen to be posted somewhere on your site, it is very difficult to find. Nutritional information SHOULD be posted on your site and easy for your patrons to find. Health conscious people like to know what they are eating and people who have allergies & dietary restrictions need to know nutritional information as well. Many other restaurants have started making their nutritional information available to their patrons. If your nutritional information is not posted, it leads me to believe the food is being cooked in such a way that would have it contain a lot of saturated fat, trans fat, sugar, and different additives. Until your nutritional information is posted, I will not be eating at your restaurant. I would also appreciate an explanation as to why you don’t have nutritional information posted. Thank-you.”
Harsh? Maybe a bit. I do feel, however, that restaurants need to provide this info. If you don’t want to see it that is fine. For those of us who do it is nice to have the option that we can view it and it is readily available to us. To me, there is absolutely no excuse not to have it posted, especially if the restaurant is a chain. If the restaurant is a chain, food should be prepared in exactly the same way at each one and therefore, there would be a set list of ingredients. If I’m wrong, please correct me.
I sent e-mails to Crabby Joe’s & Moose Winooski’s this past Saturday (April 10). I sent the e-mail to Moxie’s on Monday morning (April 12th). The responses? Moxie’s responded within four hours (I will post their response in a separate entry). Crabby Joe’s & Moose Winooski’s? I am still waiting! This Saturday, I will send a second e-mail. To me, the longer a company waits to respond, the less I am going to think they don’t care about their patrons.
This post will probably the first in a series since I plan on contacting more restaurants. I will post their responses. I also plan on posting restaurants that do provide their nutritional info. I just want to say one of the best nutritional guides I’ve found was for Jack Astor’s. Their guide not only gives nutritional information but also has allergy information! Kudos to them! Check the guide out here.
I will be sure to keep posting new entries as I get more responses. I will get the response from Moxie’s posted very soon.