Sub-standard foodstuffs

Why is it impossible to find decent quality foodstuffs (fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats, etc.) in Taiwan? Considerring their climate, economy, and location, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to buy a carton of real milk, or a real orange.

Do they have laws against the imports of certain foods to protect their economy?

Oranges and milk have got to be the crappiest versions I’ve tried anywhere in the world. All over Asia you can buy excellent California and Florida oranges, even in the frozen wastelands of Canada you can get better fruit than here.

Is there any place in Taiwan where you can buy a real orange? I can’t stand the genetically modified sugar water, no nutritional value, no flavor, Taiwanese oranges.

Any place in Taipei city you can get real milk? (not the reconstituted frankenfood milk that’s for sale everywhere).

[quote=“MrFantastic”]Why is it impossible to find decent quality foodstuffs (fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats, etc.) in Taiwan? Considerring their climate, economy, and location, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to buy a carton of real milk, or a real orange.

Do they have laws against the imports of certain foods to protect their economy?

Oranges and milk have got to be the crappiest versions I’ve tried anywhere in the world. All over Asia you can buy excellent California and Florida oranges, even in the frozen wastelands of Canada you can get better fruit than here.

Is there any place in Taiwan where you can buy a real orange? I can’t stand the genetically modified sugar water, no nutritional value, no flavor, Taiwanese oranges.

Any place in Taipei city you can get real milk? (not the reconstituted frankenfood milk that’s for sale everywhere).[/quote]

Fruit? The local fruit is insanely delicious. Try getting a mango in Canada that doen’t taste like cardboard.

Milk, yeah, it’s crap. BUt there’s a thread on a local organic outfit so do a search.

BTW, where are you buying your fruit? In supermarkets? There’s only one place I buy in Muzha cause they aways have the best. I’m sure other areas are the same.

Look around before you slag off the whole island. :unamused:

It took me a while, but I found a great market that has top-class fruit and veggies. Don’t buy them from a supermarket or hypermarket, they will be absolute crap. Look around a bit more. Find either a morning or an afternoon outdoor market. Get to know the vendors. You can get some great deals.

However, if you’re looking for quality apples, berries and oranges like we have back home, then good luck finding them. It’s a whole different market over here. That said, the quality of Taiwan’s fruit can not be denied. I love the mangoes, starfruit and those little green sour oranges (they make great juice).

And as for milk, it has gotten better over the years, at least in terms of selection. I-mei makes a pretty good milk, and I have seen some Aussie milk that is not bad at all. But for real fresh milk, I think there are a few places down south that I have heard about, but never actually seen.
Maybe some of our southern posters can enlighten us. :slight_smile:

Actually, those greenish oranges that look unripened are very delicious. They are a bit like what we call mandarins back home but bigger. I think they call them tangerines here but I don’t think that’s right.

Anyway, I was here for years before I tried one. Always thought they were unripe and hard. But they are very tasty indeed. I haven’t seen them out yet.

[quote]Fruit? The local fruit is insanely delicious. Try getting a mango in Canada that doen’t taste like cardboard. [/quote]Bananas are the best. They are picked ripe, not green and hard. Same goes with other local fruit. Quite delicious, I agree.

The milk is horrible without a doubt and so is the bread.

bobepine

[quote=“MrFantastic”]Why is it impossible to find decent quality foodstuffs (fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats, etc.) in Taiwan? Considerring their climate, economy, and location, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to buy a carton of real milk, or a real orange.

Do they have laws against the imports of certain foods to protect their economy?

Oranges and milk have got to be the crappiest versions I’ve tried anywhere in the world. All over Asia you can buy excellent California and Florida oranges, even in the frozen wastelands of Canada you can get better fruit than here.

Is there any place in Taiwan where you can buy a real orange? I can’t stand the genetically modified sugar water, no nutritional value, no flavor, Taiwanese oranges.

Any place in Taipei city you can get real milk? (not the reconstituted frankenfood milk that’s for sale everywhere).[/quote]
Let’s see …

Oranges: I’ve purchased Florida or California oranges in some local fruit markets. Ordinary in all regards.

Milk: Nothing that is great, but a few that are passable, like Love brand milk. I use so little of it now that I’ve actually started using those small, individual drink boxes of milk. Four to six month unrefrigerated shelf life. Put six of those in the fridge, and walla, no spoiled milk problem anymore.

Vegetables: Some things seem to be missing, but I’ve found the real thing in many cases by looking around (small vegetable markets or small grocery stores). There are also good local substitutes for many things. About the only thing that I haven’t found yet that I’d like is some good lettuce. I haven’t even seen any bad lettuce (iceberg).

Meat: Aussie or NZ beef can be found pretty easily. Costco has a pretty decent selection of meat.

Cheese: At first I thought there was none. Well, in most grocery stores there isn’t really. But you can find good cheese in the deli section of some Wellcome stores (if they are big enough to have a deli) and several other places across Taipei.

Bread: I’ve finally found some decent wheat bread, happens to have nuts in it also. Nice touch. But that came about after looking through several small bakeries, and trying different kinds.

Bananas: Those things still plague me. Often, only the tiny ones are available. Other times, the larger ones have these mystery “splits” down the side of the peel and the banana starts to dry out inside. Then, the prices on bananas fluctuate wildly.

The biggest pain with all of this stuff is the constantly moving prices, especially when the vendors can blame increases on the last typhoon.

The list goes on …

Just keep the faith and keep looking.

Yeah, the green oranges are great. The watermelon is awesome. Like candy. And no seeds! Pineapple is also really good and there are at least a couple of different kinds (I think pineapple is probably the tastiest fruit there is). Mango is ok. I kind of OD’d on that there. I could do without that star fruit or guava.

Taiwan’s a subtropical country so the fruit’s gotta be good.

The green peel-able oranges that start to become available this time of year are my absolute favourite. I might eat 12 a day.

Never really liked drinking milk, so that’s never been an issue for me. Only use it in coffee.

As for fruit. Never had a preblrm eith that in Taiwan either. I live in the east district of Tainan city and near my home (Linsen road) there is a fruit store. Kinda like the Portuguese fruit markets back home. They have a wide variety of fruit, reasonably priced and all of it delicious.

Just shop around…

Great asparagus, tomatoes, mangoes, coriander/cilantro, duck, wax apples, watermelons, strawberries etc. Just shop around.

Hey Muzha Man, can you tell us where this is? Thanks

[quote=“MrFantastic”]Why is it impossible to find decent quality foodstuffs (fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats, etc.) in Taiwan? Considerring their climate, economy, and location, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to buy a carton of real milk, or a real orange.

Do they have laws against the imports of certain foods to protect their economy?

Oranges and milk have got to be the crappiest versions I’ve tried anywhere in the world. All over Asia you can buy excellent California and Florida oranges, even in the frozen wastelands of Canada you can get better fruit than here.

Is there any place in Taiwan where you can buy a real orange? I can’t stand the genetically modified sugar water, no nutritional value, no flavor, Taiwanese oranges.

Any place in Taipei city you can get real milk? (not the reconstituted frankenfood milk that’s for sale everywhere).[/quote]

Yes, untill recentely Taiwan proteced it’s local farmer and still does for a part. On fruit and fruit related imports there where importduties to be paid of up to 50%.

For quality milk you need green pastures, at least for a part of the year, Taiwan has only few of them … so milk quality is not that good … but they are working on it … milk is too expensive tho … but I found and acceptable solution for the problem … using UHT milk from New Zealand.

Most of the year Taiwan imports oranges from the US too, just look around … they are Sunkist oranges … but in full orange season it’s the horrible Taiwanese, small, tasteless, colorless juice kind.
Although, from October through November you can buy these delicious large green oranges, they are excellent and can compete with spanish oranges … BTW I don’t like US oranges that much.

Pineapples are available twice a year I believe from domestic farms, they are great. Mangoes are better than many place in the world … as for other fruits, there is a specific season in Taiwan for other fruits … not as in Europe where you can get anything whole year round.

I must admit that a lot of veggies are not of high quality, but think of it as the Taiwanese do … they cut it up, cook it and eat it … no worries about how it looks … tomatoes are picked too early, potatoes are horrible but on the other hand if you like mushrooms, there is a good choice to be made in Taiwan.

Meat you can get in any hypermarket, Wellcome has even some chilled beef, instead of the majority of stores that sell frozen imported.

Through the years I’ve found out that when you search well you can find anything you want or find someone who can get or at least knows how to get it … but this is Taiwan and importers don’t think about us, foreigners, it’s not a big market enough. They start something and than discontinue … because it’s too expensive for most of the regular foreigners and they don’t buy it …
Why? The importers want an upmark of at least 100%, because of the risk involved. They take the same profit margin as for any imported goods, in Europes if you get a margin of 15% on your food as retailer/hypermarket it’s a good thing, in Taiwan they want at least double of what they paid for … I have to add that it used to be like this …

BTW, more and more Taiwanese farmers start growing western kind of veggies like bell peppers and salads, lettuce etc …

Look and you’ll find … :wink:

There is one brand of milk here which stands head and shoulders above the rest:

“Fresh Delight”

The full cream milk has brown livery and the reduced fat has blue livery. It is excellent quality and taste compared to the competition but more expensive.

I don’t bother eating oranges or apples. I prefer fruit that is more “native” to Taiwan… mangoes, lychees, passionfruit, bananas.

Oranges, apples, grapes and pears are really meant to grow in a more mediterranean climate.

[quote=“Tyc00n”]The full cream milk has brown livery and the reduced fat has blue livery. It is excellent quality and taste compared to the competition but more expensive.
[/quote]
What’s a brown livery? A blue livery? Hold on – what’s a livery? :help:

livery- old fashioned sevants wear, or bright colours that cover something.

In Britsh English - a set of colours and designs used by a company on its property and vehicles.

[quote=“Limey”]livery- old fashioned sevants wear, or bright colours that cover something.

In Britsh English - a set of colours and designs used by a company on its property and vehicles.[/quote]
Thanks, Limey. I was guessing along those lines, but not sure. So, in this case it means brown or blue carton/logo design.

?!

Shitty fruits bad oranges!?

Dude where do you live, better yet where do you shop?

Taiwan is fruit lovers heaven, As for california oranges ?

I know that food from home is sometimes comfort food on those hard days but get some perspective! You are not home and the whole place has a different market for food.

explore the local fruit and oranges, tangerines, mu gua, mangos, etc…

As for milk I have been drinking doh jiang (Soy) for years before I came. Fresh soy milk right out of the kettle does not get any better.

Reklax and explore some local products, you may like it.

:wink:

[quote=“Tyc00n”]There is one brand of milk here which stands head and shoulders above the rest:
“Fresh Delight”[/quote]

I agree. It’s by far the best, and makes a perfect cup of latte.

Fresh Delight orange juice is also, for me, the best on the market. As it happens to be very reasonably priced, I’m happy to glug down gallons of the stuff.

And while the supply of fruit has been very poor this summer because of all the typhoons, there’s normally a plentiful selection of delicious local specialties available. As well as the mangoes, lychees, Chinese New Year oranges, melons, bananas, and others that have already been mentioned, those big round crispy pears are truly luscious and well worth their hefty price tag.

take a swig of water straight from your bathroom tap at home… tastes like crap right?.. high pH, heavy metal infested, chemical laden nastyness on a scale that varies across the island depending on where you live… if tap water tastes that bad imagine what kind of water they use for irrigation of fruit / veggie crops…

sure water is partially filtered as it is absorbed by plants, but many contaminants remain in the water stored in fruits and veggies… as every kid learns tomatoes for example are 93% (90-something % anyway I forget) water… you use crap water, then drench the crop in chemicals and pesticides and the reason your tomatoes taste 93% crap is obvious and the same goes for other fresh produce… and that’s before you add the 差不多 mentality in picking, packaging, transporting, storing and shelf life…

but hey it satisfies the 3 major requirements for Taiwanese consumers… cheap, cheap and cheap… I mean who ever asked for quality in Taiwan?.. well, you get what you pay for…

Damn you! I’ve been trying really hard not to let that thought emerge from my subconscious. :wink:

On a less polluted note, I have found a decent brand of local ice cream. Surely, you can make the equivalent of car payments and buy Haagen- Dazs, but something local must be edible, right? Well, most of it has lots of ice crystals in it, maybe from substituting water for milk.

After some experimentation, I found a local brand in the grocery store called “Duroyal”. They have at least figured out how to stress the second word in ice cream. The chocolate flavor is good. Haven’t tried the vanilla. That’s all I’ve seen so far. Now that it’s getting cooler and the official government-sanctioned timeframe to eat ice cream has passed, I’m sure I won’t be trying any other flavors until next summer. But, it’s pretty good, give it a try.