Defective ground will not cause the Fry daddy to not work. An open neutral will cause the problem. The defective ground could be the result of the meter change.
Generally pulling and changing the meter should not. However if they happen to bond the neutral and ground at the meter in this location then maybe somehow the bond got removed. Maybe it shouldn't have been bonded in the meter and the installer removed the bond thinking it was already done in the panel.I haven't done much research on this so I am curious how the meter change would have any affect on the grounding.