Whenever a person goes out to eat, they may come across a food quality inspection sign at the front door. In some cities like Los Angeles and New York, information on cleanliness is found with a letter grading system while others have plain, letter notices.
Orange County, California does it a little differently with orange-colored custom logo decals featuring the phrases "pass," "reinspection due, pass" and "closed." The problem with this system is that the signage is identical in every way — only the center of the round decals featuring one the three phrases differs, according to the Los Angeles Times.
As a way to reduce confusion and increase transparency with foodies, the Orange County grand jury and Board of Supervisors are considering changing the restaurant rating system.
While some officials want to implement the commonly used letter grading system, the project may cost up to $500,000 — a high price just to change one sign at the front of a restaurant. Another suggestion is to create a three-color coded system similar to a traffic light. Green decals would indicate that the food establishment passed inspection, yellow means they are good to go, but still waiting another inspection and red eateries are closed, a local ABC affiliate reported.
"Every county around Orange County has implemented a letter grade, so for me to implement any other system other than a letter grade, even given the system we have today, for me it just sets up confusion," Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer told the source.
Some say the traffic light system may cause customers to decide against eating specific places. Karly Cable from Biola University explained to the Times that she would feel more comfortable eating somewhere with a "B" inspection rating than a "yellow" decal.