Brandon Restrepo

Brandon J. Restrepo

Research Agricultural Economist


Brandon J. Restrepo is a research agricultural economist in the Diet, Safety, and Health Economics Branch of the Food Economics Division at USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS). His research focuses on economic issues associated with food labeling, diet and health, and obesity. Since 2016, his work has investigated how dietary behavior and diet-related health are affected by nutrition information, food prices, food assistance, unemployment, and time use.


Before joining ERS, he was an economist at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, where he conducted cost-benefit analyses of regulations involving food safety, drug safety and effectiveness, and tobacco-product manufacturing practices. Brandon has also been a Max Weber Fellow at the European University Institute, a postdoctoral researcher at the Athens University of Economics and Business, a senior economist at the White House Council of Economic Advisers, and a lecturer for the M.S. in applied economics program at Johns Hopkins University.


Brandon earned his Ph.D. and M.A. in economics at The Ohio State University and his B.S. in economics at St. John’s University.

Selected Publications

Nam, P.K., Restrepo, B.J., Rieger, M., & Wagner, N. Forthcoming. Can information enhanced with nudges mitigate the rise of childhood obesity in the Global South? Journal of Human Resources.

Restrepo, B.J. Forthcoming. Adults noticing calorie counts on restaurant menus: Evidence from nationally representative data, 2022. American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Restrepo, B.J. (2023). The protective effect of SNAP during economic downturns: Evidence from the COVID-19 pandemic, Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy 45(4):2141–2160.

Restrepo, B.J., & Zeballos, E. (2022). Work from home and daily time allocations: Evidence from the coronavirus pandemic,” Review of Economics of the Household 20(3):735–758.

Restrepo, B.J. (2022). Obesity prevalence among U.S. adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 63(1):102–106.

Lee, J.Y., Nayga, R.M. Jr., Jo, Y., & Restrepo, B.J. (2022). Time use and eating patterns of SNAP participants over the benefit month. Food Policy 106:102186.

Restrepo, B.J., Rabbitt, M.P., & Gregory, C.A. (2021). The effect of unemployment on food spending and adequacy: Evidence from coronavirus-induced firm closures. Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy 43(1):185–204.

Todd, J.E., Mancino, L., Restrepo, B.J., Kavanaugh, C., Dicken, C., & Breneman, V. (2021). Food away from home and caloric intake: The role of restaurant menu labeling laws. Economic Inquiry 59(1):53–71.

Restrepo, B.J., & Zeballos, E. (2020). The effect of working from home on major time allocations with a focus on food-related activities. Review of Economics of the Household 18(4):1165–1187.

Restrepo, B.J., & Cantor, J.H. (2020). The effects of soda taxes on adolescent calorie intake, sugar intake, and blood sugar. Health Economics, 29(11):1422–1434.

Restrepo, B.J. (2020). Intake of trans fats among U.S. youth declined from 1999–2000 to 2009–10. Public Health Nutrition 23(6):1103–1107.

Nakaguma, M.Y., & Restrepo, B.J. (2018). Restricting access to alcohol and public health: Evidence from electoral dry laws in Brazil. Health Economics 27(1):141–156.

Restrepo, B.J. (2017). Calorie labeling in chain restaurants and body weight: Evidence from New York. Health Economics 26(10):1191–1209.

Restrepo, B.J. (2017). Further decline of trans fatty acids levels among U.S. adults between 1999–2000 and 2009–10. American Journal of Public Health 107(1):156–58.

Restrepo, B.J. (2016). Parental investment responses to a low birth weight outcome: Who compensates and who reinforces? Journal of Population Economics 29(4):969–989.

Restrepo, B.J., & Rieger, M. (2016). Trans fat and cardiovascular disease mortality: Evidence from bans in restaurants in New York. Journal of Health Economics 45(C):176–196.

Restrepo, B.J., & Rieger, M. (2016). Denmark’s policy on artificial trans fat and cardiovascular disease. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 50(1):69–76.