Is Hong Kong still a food paradise? Not if landlords keep charging sky-high rents

Is Hong Kong still a food paradise? Not if landlords keep charging sky-high rents

The food culture of Hong Kong will disappear unless everyone takes action to save local restaurants

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Hong Kong's reputation as a food paradise may be in danger.
Photo: Anthony Dickson/SCMP

I am writing to express my opinions regarding whether Hong Kong is a food paradise.

One of the city’s attractions is the many cuisines from different countries. However, Hong Kong is losing its reputation as a food paradise. The sky-high rent across the 852 has lead to a lack of local food. Only the high-end restaurants can afford to keep running. Small businesses cannot pay the rent, and many local restaurants close down. If no action is taken immediately, this situation will get worse and we will not remember what local food looks or tastes like.

Our government should support small- and medium-sized restaurants in Hong Kong. Subsidies, or lower tax rates, should be provided. More promotion should be done to raise awareness of the many types of dishes you can eat in Hong Kong, too.

Business owners should also come up with their own dishes to attract customers away from the bigger restaurants.

Last but not least, citizens like us should also help promote local food and our claim as a food paradise. We should not be tempted by the places we see on social media, and we should try to recommend small, local restaurants instead of chain restaurants. Small actions like these can have a big effect.

In conclusion, we all have a responsibility to promote the local food culture of Hong Kong. Otherwise, we will end up only eating Western food, or fast food. If we don’t do something soon, then Hong Kong’s food paradise reputation will gradually disappear.

Stacy Seto, Tsuen Wan Public Ho Chuen Yiu Memorial College

A rich taste of Hong Kong culture​

From the editor

Thank you for your email, Stacy. We share your feelings about high rents for restaurants and other businesses. Yes, if nothing is done we will lose more shops and eateries that we like. It seems to be unstoppable.

We’re not sure the government should be giving hard-earned tax payers’ money to greedy landlords, though. Considering people are already paying high prices for goods, giving the landlords money from our taxes would be hard to agree to.

Perhaps there should be zones of government-owned buildings, where rent is set at a reasonable price so that both shoppers and business owners would be happy, and the greedy landlords would be forced to drop their prices.

Susan, Editor

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
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