How switching the order of the menu reduces meat consumption.

NudgeForGood #2 🧠🍅🧠🥖

Reducing the consumption of meat has great potential to mitigate food-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. An experiment was conducted at two restaurants at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden (2015-2016).

The fourth largest university in the country, 24,000 full-time students.


  • Find ways to promoting this behaviour while keeping freedom of choice is challenging.

The experimental design targets the visibility of the vegetarian dish and the menu order, two key elements of the food environment that impact the has proven to impact the decision-making process.

The Nudge:

1) Changing information order

During the experiment, the vegetarian dish option was moved on both the weekly and the daily menus from position two to the top at the treated restaurant.

The nudge lever at play is the information framing, which impact the way our brain processes the information and take decision. Read more here.

2) Increase salience

It visibility was increased by placing it before the counter at the point of order, and consequently, both meat dishes were placed behind the counter.

Here, what was used is the salience effect, in order to fight against the salience bias which is our tendency to focus on items or elements that are more noteworthy while ignoring those that do not catch our attention.


  • Increased the share of vegetarian lunches sold by around 6 percentage points.

  • Reduced GHG emissions from food sales of around 5%.

Beyond that, the effect of the change lasted even after the experiment was ended and the nudge removed!

Click here if you would like to read the full study from more Verena Kurz.

Small changes can make great impact. Do you think this could be applicable in the restaurants you usually go ?

Don’t hesitate to get in touch to share your ideas on how this can be implemented even further!

19 views0 comments