Workplace Ethics: Menu Science

Subject: Business Ethics
Pages: 1
Words: 309
Reading time:
2 min
Study level: College

Ethical issues may occur in the situations where they are least expected, even in a restaurant. For instance, in the article Menu science: The subtle ways restaurants get you to spend more, Stephanie Bank describes how restaurants implement psychological “tricks” in their menus to make more money. However, the amount of ethical implications, in this case, is low because there are no moral rights of people that restaurants violate, and their actions are associated with any ethical issues.

Using ordinary marketing strategies in restaurants does not have any ideals and ethical consequences at stake. Though these strategies may be effective in making people spend their money, people “all fall for these tricks regardless of intelligence” (Bank, 2018, para. 12). Therefore, no moral rights are violated in this case because spending money in the restaurant is not a challenging ethical choice – restaurants do not make people order food and pay for it forcefully. In Utilitarianism, the restaurants’ actions are even ethically justifiable as they are helpful, which defines the action’s moral quality. According to Bank (2018), people nowadays often eat at restaurants and similar places, meaning they need it. Restaurants allow doing so, which is a valuable deed. Kantian ethics also justifies restaurants’ strategies as it implies that nothing can be considered good without a limitation. Therefore, a Utilitarian and a Kantian would recommend thinking forward and not blaming restaurants for the money waste because they do good in many respects.

Overall, the usage of psychological tricks in the restaurants’ menus is not a violation of people’s moral rights, and it should be considered an ethical issue. Both Utilitarian and Kantian ethics applied to the article under discussion illustrate that restaurants’ actions are ethically justifiable. People themselves choose what and where to it and how much to pay for it, and they cannot blame restaurants for their money waste.


Bank, S. (2018). Menu science: The subtle ways restaurants get you to spend more. The Globe and Mail.