When I order my daily coffee with soy milk, I expect it to be dairy-free. If not, I can be sure that Starbucks will take responsibility for my allergic reaction.
However, it's a different story for those who purchase food online. Taiwan's Horng Ryen Jen made the news when more than 40 people came down with food poisoning after eating the company's sandwiches.
Buying food online puts consumers at risk. Although all food vendors must comply with regulations, it's easier for online sellers to escape scrutiny. At the same time, it's difficult for consumers to hold dishonest dealers to account.
The lack of accountability that comes with the rise of online food sales calls for a stricter and clearer set of rules. The government can inform people of the risks and strengthen the licensing system, but consumers have a responsibility to ensure that their food is coming from safe suppliers.