Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Selling Pigeons on a Limb

For the last thirteen years or so, I’ve done much of my food shopping in Guangya Market. It isn’t my nearest market, but is the one I know best and the nearer one is a dirty, unpleasant place.

Unlicensed traders outside Guangya Market, Liuzhou

I particularly like to go to Guangya at the weekend. The chengguan who are employed Mon – Fri to harass illegal traders aren’t around, so the street leading to the market is full of interesting, but dodgy characters selling interesting but dodgy things. (Recently, one Liuzhou market’s licensed traders went on strike for a day because the illegal traders weren’t being harassed enough.) One of Guangya’s more frequent unlicensed traders was a woman in her fifties who sat in the street with a cardboard box full of what she advertised as pigeon eggs. I remember feeling pretty happy with myself when I realised I was able to read her sign despite it being upside down. I even took a picture, although she didn’t look too happy about it.

Pigeon eggs 鸽子 蛋 gē zi dàn

I’ve never bought her eggs. I never felt the need, although I like a bit of roast pigeon.

This morning, when I visited the market, I did notice she wasn’t in her usual spot, but thought nothing of it. When I got home and did my usual perusal of the local news, I discovered why.

According to reports,  a woman in her fifties has been found to be selling fake pigeon eggs in Guangya market. It appears she was bleaching quails eggs which sell for a fraction of the price of pigeon eggs, then passing them off. Although there isn’t much in it, pigeon’s eggs are a little larger.

left - Quail eggs (bleached and unbleached); right a real pigeon egg

I did wonder about her before, though. I’ve always understood that selling pigeon eggs is uneconomical as the hatched egg – i.e. a pigeon, is much more profitable.

Century Mart used to sell goose eggs. They were fun and definitely not quail! Now I’m just waiting for the ostrich eggs.

Tags: , , , , . This entry was posted on Saturday, March 10th, 2012 at 4:21 pm and is filed under Food and Drink, Liuzhou News, Strawberry Fields. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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