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Legal / Illegal Street food / Food Poisoning and Cage Homes..

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  1. #1

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    Legal / Illegal Street food / Food Poisoning and Cage Homes..

    Snipped from http://hongkong.geoexpat.com/forum/s...4&goto=newpost


    Speaking of late night snacks :

    When I first got here back in the mid 90's it was pretty easy to find (illegal) streetfood around the Island. Over the years, the food cops cracked down on them so they started disappearing, especially during the evening hours (5-10pm).

    But as soon as the food cops went to bed, these guys would pop up again. As the years went by, the hours became later and later. By around 1999, a few noodle guys were still operating but they would only open past 2am.

    After 2000, I havent seen a single illegal hawker at any hour. I know they are still around in the NT but has anyone seen these illegal food sellers on HKIsland lately?
    Last edited by shri; 03-07-2014 at 03:32 PM.
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  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by HowardCoombs:
    Speaking of late night snacks :

    When I first got here back in the mid 90's it was pretty easy to find (illegal) streetfood around the Island. Over the years, the food cops cracked down on them so they started disappearing, especially during the evening hours (5-10pm).

    But as soon as the food cops went to bed, these guys would pop up again. As the years went by, the hours became later and later. By around 1999, a few noodle guys were still operating but they would only open past 2am.

    After 2000, I havent seen a single illegal hawker at any hour. I know they are still around in the NT but has anyone seen these illegal food sellers on HKIsland lately?
    Can I ask why you think this is a good thing ?

    Legit eateries are having a very difficult time at the moment, most of the mum and dad run non mega resto group places etc are barely making enough to pay themselves.... Yet you want to go all 3rd world and allow illegal operators ? Which achieves what, apart from putting legit places with huge overhead commitments ie rising rents, out of business...

    What is wrong with you ?

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  3. #3

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    I think his point is that most legit operations close at that time, so there's no food anyway. The illegal food hawkers at least provide some late night snacks. In many districts independent eateries aren't left anymore. The large chains like cafe de coral / McDonald's aren't going to care if there's a hawker on the street next door to them. They're taking in cash anyway.

    The only issue I see with hawkers is that the food is most likely unsanitary and not necessarily safe for consumption.


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    I love the street stalls. I can remember the days when I was still a young lad enjoying the food. Sadly they're not around anymore, or are very very rare.

    There's one just off Minden Avenue, they sell the best mock fin soup in the whole of HK. They're only ever there it seems very late at night 11pm+ and towards the weekends.

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    Original Post Deleted
    Oh I am sorry...

    I was thinking along the lines of what a first world city should responsibly adhere to, ie standards, regulations and licensing.

    I have no problem with ' licensed' food vendors that are given a set location that they can work from, policed by the local municipality and randomly inspected by food and hygiene officers from time to time. I do have a problem with ' back yarder ' operations that ply their trade illegally.

    You wouldnt accept it in your own industry/sector, just like we wouldn't entertain an unqualified medical doctor, lawyer, pilot etc etc etc. Basic standards MUST be enforced if one wants to be recognised as a functional first world city. These regs/rules/standards are for everybody to accept, rich, or poor.

    I agree with you about the rapidly increasing commercial rent situation, but I wouldn't say that is an exclusive challenge in HK. Property markets in Australia and the UK are suffering similar pressures. The difference there though, is, I dont hear of anybody crowing on about how the poor should actively break the law to make their living. That's just staggering to be honest.

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    I've eaten off street carts since a little girl and have had food poisoning a total of five times since 1994:

    7-11
    Olivers
    Ebeneezers
    and two five-star hotels.

    Never from a hawker or dai pai dong, or any such source. I have, however, had some of the most delicious food from hawkers, though

    Update - that sounded as though I was a little girl in 1994...far from it I've live in HK since the early 60s and 1994 was my first food poisoning experience. And yes, I absolutely should have known not to touch a tuna sandwich from 7-11, especially as it was purchased in the late evening!

    Last edited by Fiona in HKG; 03-07-2014 at 11:08 AM. Reason: Clarification
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    Quote Originally Posted by IreOlcas:
    OpenRice seems to be the most popular Hong Kong food-review site, so I'm always checking reccomendations there, to see where they are and how people at large find the places. Are there other sites like this in English?

    Keep the reccomendations coming! I kinda have a psychological aversion to custard, so I'm not too sure about all the Egg Tart reccomendations, also my dislike for Hot Beverages makes me hesitate about all the Milk Tea/Green Tea reccomendations, although I will try them all obviously.

    I plan to try everything quintessentially Hong Kong food wise. So chicken feet are definitely on the menu at some point.
    You have to know how to decipher OpenRice. The comments in English will most likely be reviewers with Western pallets. Expensive restaurants always get scored lower because they are expensive. Cheap restaurants always get a bit of grade inflation because they are cheap. Examples of this are The Chairman (which I referenced in my post earlier in this thread) as an expensive restaurant rated lower than it should based on high price and Joy Hing Roasted Meats, which is very inexpensive but not very good but highly rated. Odd . . . there are easily a dozen roast meat places I think are better that aren't much more expensive.

  8. #8

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    Original Post Deleted

    Does it make you absolutely sick in the guts that the very same thing is happening in London, and the outer periphery/boroughs. What makes matters worse is you have quite a number of SCUM landlords that illegally rent properties to illegal immigrants, a sizable enough problem for the police ( and the IMD) to employ light aircraft, equipped with infra red thermal imaging cameras, to scan industrial area's, or suburbs during the very early hours of the morning, that have a high instance of illegally built back sheds, which house a fair chunk of the UK's illegal immigrant population.


    Crying foul here, when your own country is just as bad, if not worse, considering the UK is meant to know better than this. Do as I say not as I do, apparently.

    Also consider the stark reality, (fact) that there is an exponentially growing rental underclass in the UK. Clap your hands, what an achievement !

    Feel free to step down off your high horse, when you have sorted out the mammoth social issues that face your own nation, before worrying about what's going on anywhere else.
    Last edited by Skyhook; 03-07-2014 at 02:02 PM.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fiona in HKG:
    I've eaten off street carts since a little girl and have had food poisoning a total of five times since 1994:

    7-11
    Olivers
    Ebeneezers
    and two five-star hotels.

    Never from a hawker or dai pai dong, or any such source. I have, however, had some of the most delicious food from hawkers, though

    Update - that sounded as though I was a little girl in 1994...far from it I've live in HK since the early 60s and 1994 was my first food poisoning experience. And yes, I absolutely should have known not to touch a tuna sandwich from 7-11, especially as it was purchased in the late evening!
    I have had serious food poisoning from an illegal hawker during summer of 2000, never again I will go to an illegal food hawker, my rear end was like Krakatoa eruption.

    Dai pa dong are not illegal and have the necessary licenses to serve food, never had problems with these places

    I had problems with Portuguese place in macau once though

    ebeneezers, didn't taste very nice, so I have only had it twice, I heard repeated horror stories from them many times though

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by imparanoic:
    I have had serious food poisoning from an illegal hawker during summer of 2000, never again I will go to an illegal food hawker, my rear end was like Krakatoa eruption.

    Dai pa dong are not illegal and have the necessary licenses to serve food, never had problems with these places

    I had problems with Portuguese place in macau once though

    ebeneezers, didn't taste very nice, so I have only had it twice, I heard repeated horror stories from them many times though
    I was lumping dai pai dongs in there as quite a few people still refuse to eat at them, and are missing out! I had a Krakatoa-like experience courtesy of Ebeneezers but recently, a sushi box from Olivers put me in hospital for 3 days, mostly with vomiting though! I'm still trying to rebuild my good bacteria!

    I hear ya, there's truly nothing worse than the effects of bad food, but to be honest I've had more bad effects from places you'd never expect to have a problem with, rather than food off the street.

    Speaking of illegal food carts, does anyone remember Egg Waffle Uncle? His waffles were a thing of true beauty

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