NYC Links Drop In Foodborne Illness To Grades
NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Giving letter grades to the thousands of restaurants in New York City â¿¿ from humble delis to celebrity chef-powered eateries â¿¿ has been a boon to business and has led to a decline in the number of cases of salmonella food poisoning, the mayor and health officials said Tuesday.
Some city council members, however, say the grading system is far from perfect and needs to be reviewed. Restaurant industry representatives complain of excessive inspections and burdensome fines on small businesses.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas A. Farley and other health officials announced initial data Tuesday showing salmonella infections decreased by 13.5 percent over the first full year the city has used letter grades. The Health Department said 1,296 cases of salmonella were reported in 2010 and preliminary data show 1,121 cases in 2011.Further emphasizing that sanitary conditions are improving, the officials said more than 72 percent of the city's 24,000 restaurants earned "A'' grades compared to 65 percent a year ago. They also highlighted the most recent tax data available showing restaurant sales were up 9.3 percent from June 2010 to February 2011. "It just may be that clean kitchens are as good for business as clean air is when a restaurant is smoke-free," Bloomberg said at a news conference held at Zero Otto Nove in the Bronx. The city started handing out letter grades in July 2010. Restaurants can get an A, B, or C, based on points for sanitary conditions. Restaurants have to post the grades in a visible area such as a street-facing window or door. Common sanitary violations include food stored at improper temperatures and evidence of vermin. The largely positive announcement, which included the release of survey results showing New Yorkers largely approve of the grading system, came a day before the City Council was expected to hold a hearing on restaurant letter grades.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV