Overseas Chinese seek to adjust dining habits to prevent culinary culture shock

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/6/16 18:33:42

A woman of Chinese origin in Italy was criticized by angry local residents for "slaughtering" ducks, local newspaper Il Mattino reported recently. 

The report also stressed local residents' concerns over health and hygiene risks. 

The complaint is not an isolated one, as several similar cases have been reported.

A Chinese restaurant in Milan, Italy, was sued in court for slaughtering live birds, and its business license was revoked in June 2017, the news website chinaqw.com reported on Sunday. A poultry shop in Chinatown San Francisco was besieged and protesters rushed into the store to release six hens in May 2017. Three months later, a local butcher put up animal-rights signs to stop protests, according to news site Berkeley Side on August 2, 2017. 

Due to differences in local customs and laws, practices considered normal by Chinese people could be illegal in overseas environments.

There are strict regulations on slaughtering live poultry in many countries. The Italian government bans the private use of poultry and animal cruelty. It is also illegal to kill live fish in restaurants. 

Livestock in the Netherlands can only be killed in the most "humane" way in a slaughterhouse, so that animals do not feel pain that comes from uniform slaughtering.

Under animal protection laws, dishes that involve "drunk" shrimps and crabs - a traditional method in which the seafood are soaked in spirits and steamed alive - are not acceptable. 

In China, fish heads are cooked in various ways and often served together with pancakes as classical dishes. However, foreign diners might find it unappetizing to be served fish heads. 

Animal organs in Chinese cuisine are appreciated in China but for Westerners, these are unacceptable. 

Overseas Chinese looking to integrate better into local communities and keep themselves away from illegal activities could use dining as their first step, experts said.

Posted in: SOCIETY

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