The economic effect of smoke-free restaurant policies on restaurant business in Massachusetts

J Public Health Manag Pract. 1999 Jan;5(1):53-62. doi: 10.1097/00124784-199901000-00009.


The objective of the study was to determine if local smoke-free restaurant policies in Massachusetts affected restaurant sales. The authors used a pre-/post-quasi-experimental design to compare town-level meals tax data before and after the imposition of local smoke-free restaurant policies. Data for 235 towns (including 32 adopting communities) were entered into a fixed effects regression model to estimate changes in restaurant sales over time. The study failed to find a statistically significant effect of local smoke-free policies on restaurant business. It provides evidence that local smoke-free policies do not cause a large decline in communities' restaurant industries.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Health Policy / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Humans
  • Massachusetts
  • Regression Analysis
  • Restaurants / economics*
  • Restaurants / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Smoking / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Smoking Prevention*
  • Taxes
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / prevention & control*


  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution