Honesty on the Rise in the United States: National Social Experiment Finds 95% of Americans Honest

Honest® Tea’s National Honesty Index Finds Honolulu and Washington, D.C. Among Most Honest Cities in the U.S. and Women Slightly More Honest Than Men

News Footage: https://drive.google.com/a/lyonspr.com/file/d/0B91-va4jPUdxbDVlSWJDZHFORUk/edit?usp=sharing

Honest Tea tested America to find out where people are the most honest. (Graphic: Business Wire)

BETHESDA, Md.--()--Honest Tea recently conducted a national social experiment called The National Honesty Index, and the results are in. When faced with a choice to be honest or not, the experiment found that a resounding 95% of Americans were honest, up from 92% in 2013.

From July 16 - August 12, 2014, Honest Tea set up unmanned racks of cold Honest beverages offered for $1 on the honor system in 60 locations across all 50 states & Washington, D.C. At every site, information was collected including the number of people who paid or stole, as well as observable characteristics such as gender and hair color. In a new twist this year, an online component was added to test the honesty of people on the Internet via an honor pact. Through a Facebook application, people were asked to share an inspirational quote on their wall, or not, in return for a coupon. In total, more than 28,000 people participated in person and online.

“We seek to infuse honesty into everything we do from the way we run the company to the organic ingredients we use, so we developed this experiment to see if people around the country share that same value,” said Seth Goldman, co-founder and TeaEO of Honest Tea. “The 95% honesty rate that we saw this year suggests that Americans are a lot more honest than we give ourselves credit for.”

Highlights of the results (Combines both digital and physical experiment data):

  • Participants in Honolulu, Hawaii were 100% honest two years in a row.
  • Honesty returns to the nation’s capital as Washington, D.C. becomes the most improved city, rising to 96% honesty, 16 percentage points higher than 2013.
  • Minneapolis, Minn. and Providence, R.I. tie for biggest dip in honesty year over year, dropping 12 percentage points to 81% and 80% respectively.
  • Participants in the online experiment (as determined by authenticating via a Facebook application) were 95% honest. People identifying their relationship status on Facebook as “separated” (100% honest) proved to be more honest than “engaged” (94% honest).
  • Again, women proved to be more honest than men slightly edging them out 95% to 93% honest.
  • For the second year in a row, blondes came out as the most honest hair color with 95%. People with black hair were the least honest at 91%.

Most Honest States:

Hawaii     98% Honest
Alabama     98% Honest
Alaska     98% Honest
Tennessee     98% Honest

Least Honest States:

Montana     89% Honest
Idaho     88% Honest
Minnesota     85% Honest
Rhode Island     83% Honest

Full City Rankings:

Rank     City     State     Honesty
1     Honolulu     Hawaii     100%
2     Lake George     New York     99%
2     Manchester     Connecticut     99%
2     Birmingham     Alabama     99%
2     Nashville     Tennessee     99%
3     Little Rock     Arkansas     98%
3     Anchorage     Alaska     98%
3     Wilmington     Delaware     98%
3     New York City     New York     98%
4     Detroit     Michigan     97%
4     Clearwater     Florida     97%
4     Portland     Maine     97%
4     Omaha     Nebraska     97%
4     Louisville     Kentucky     97%
4     Indianapolis     Indiana     97%
4     Santa Monica     California     97%
5     Greenville     South Carolina     96%
5     Arlington     Virginia     96%
5     Salt Lake City     Utah     96%
5     Las Vegas     Nevada     96%
5     Los Angeles     California     96%
5     San Francisco     California     96%
5     San Antonio     Texas     96%
5     Washington     District of Columbia     96%
5     Baltimore     Maryland     96%
5     St. Louis     Missouri     96%
6     Phoenix     Arizona     95%
6     Miami     Florida     95%
6     Cincinnati     Ohio     95%
6     Hoboken     New Jersey     95%
6     Des Moines     Iowa     95%
7     Bismarck     North Dakota     94%
7     Philadelphia     Pennsylvania     94%
7     Atlanta     Georgia     94%
7     Denver     Colorado     94%
7     Bethesda     Maryland     94%
8     Dallas     Texas     93%
8     New Orleans     Louisiana     93%
8     Portland     Oregon     93%
8     Cheyenne     Wyoming     93%
9     Seattle     Washington     92%
9     Chicago     Illinois     92%
9     Rapid City     South Dakota     92%
9     Orlando     Florida     92%
10     Albuquerque     New Mexico     91%
10     Burlington     Vermont     91%
10     Houston     Texas     91%
10     Charlotte     North Carolina     91%
10     Gulf Port     Mississippi     91%
11     San Diego     California     90%
12     Boston     Massachusetts     89%
12     Kansas City     Kansas     89%
12     Laconia     New Hampshire     89%
12     Charleston     West Virginia     89%
12     Oklahoma City     Oklahoma     89%
12     Missoula     Montana     89%
13     Richmond     Virginia     88%
13     Boise     Idaho     88%
14     Milwaukee     Wisconsin     84%
15     Minneapolis     Minnesota     81%
16     Providence     Rhode Island     80%

The complete National Honesty Index results are available at www.NationalHonestyIndex.com. Visitors can play a game to challenge their assumptions on honesty, analyze the statistics, and obtain a personalized honesty profile that examines astrological signs, Facebook relationship status, and other details.

Honest Tea plans to donate all of the funds collected from the on-site social experiments to FoodCorps, a nationwide team of emerging leaders that connects kids to real food, helping them grow up healthy.


Honest Tea seeks to create and promote great-tasting, healthier, organic beverages and extend economic opportunities to communities in need. Founded in 1998 in Bethesda, MD, Honest Tea is the nation's top-selling organic bottled tea company, specializing in beverages that are Just a Tad Sweet®. Honest Tea’s product lines include: ready-to-drink bottled teas, Honest® Ade and Honest® Kids organic thirst quenchers, Honest® Freshly Brewed iced tea, and Honest® Fizz naturally sweetened zero calorie sodas. All teas and juice drinks are USDA Organic and all tea leaf varieties are Fair Trade Certified™. In addition to being recognized by the United States Healthful Food Council for helping change the food landscape, Honest Tea is a multi-year winner of awards from the Alliance for Workplace Excellence and a Montgomery County, MD Certified Green Business. Honest Tea has won Men’s Health “Best Bottled Tea” for six years and has been included in Women’s Health magazine’s “125 Best Packaged Foods for Women” for the last three years in a row. Honest Tea is an independent operating unit of The Coca-Cola Company. For more information: www.honesttea.com.


For Honest Tea
Kerrie Cassani-Levick, 404-495-4431 or 919-622-3094
Honest Tea
Dan Forman, 301-652-3556


For Honest Tea
Kerrie Cassani-Levick, 404-495-4431 or 919-622-3094
Honest Tea
Dan Forman, 301-652-3556