MANY Hongkongers worry that they might inadvertently ingest pesticides on vegetables and fruits. Many pesticides used today are organophosphates, which can harm our nervous system. But do not worry too much, because the government has set the maximum amount of pesticides allowed on the vegetables and fruits Hong Kong imports.
Farmers might also use plant growth regulators, or hormones, on their vegetables and fruits. This is to make some plants grow quicker to increase yield and others grow slower to give them a longer shelf life. Some worry that those hormones might affect human growth, but plant hormones are too different from human hormones to affect humans much.
The fruits Hong Kong imports also have little labels to show whether they are grown regularly or organically. The label has a Price Look Up Code (PLU Code), which contains information about the fruit, such as its species, origins, size, and growing method. But as this label is voluntary, buyers cannot find out if the fruit has been genetically modified.