Make your menu as yummy as your food, study urges – Side Dishes

Make your menu as yummy as your food, study urges – Side Dishes – Brief Article

CHAMPAIGN, ILL. — It has been said that people eat with their eyes, and researchers at the University of Illinois claim that the process actually begins with what people read on the menu.

As a result of the study, the men concluded that using words “that evoke favorable associations with food” would boost sales by 27 percent. Such words included “wholesome,” “buttery,” “traditional” and “crispy.”

In an article for Advances in Consumer Research, Brian Wansink and James Painter reported that the more descriptive a menu item is, the more likely people are to order it. Wansink, a marketing professor at Illinois, and Painter, manager of the university’s Quantity Foods laboratory, studied the reactions of 140 customers who dined regularly in a university cafeteria. For six weeks the menu combined plainly described items, such as “grilled chicken” with more explanatory dishes like “succulent Italian seafood filet.”

COPYRIGHT 2002 Reproduced with permission of the copyright holder. Further reproduction or distribution is prohibited without permission.

COPYRIGHT 2002 Gale Group