OK...you got me there Bonnyprincecharlie! So much for the 'adventure on shore'....that's some pretty serious reading. I've also done some additional reading that mentioned in some instances you never fully recover from certain food poisonings...there can be lingering disabilities. OMG!
But even so...'sponsored' food carts right on the pier might cause problems with the locals who depend on cruise passengers to support their economy.
When we cruised in South America, Mexico...or even around Asia...generally we wait to eat until we're back on the ship...EXCEPT when we eat at hotels that cater to Expats. We do this because I have serious food allergies and with a language barrier cannot be sure if the waiters fully understand what I can and cannot have. (this is just me, my husband can eat anything that doesn't move...and has!) We've found that sometimes the waiters will just nod, smile and say, "yes, yes"...when in fact they had no idea what we were saying. So, for my sake, just to be safe we generally eat meals on board ship. Now I thinking about all that Chinese food we ate in Hong Kong! Not really, that food is often freshly made immediately in front of you. BUT we used lots of common sense. Ate plenty of stir-fried veggies...NEVER fish...In China sometimes the chicken would be killed and cooked on the spot. Even with that, we were extremely careful and never got sick) In the Philippines we also were very very careful where we ate and NEVER ate from the street vendors, even though sometimes the fragrance from what was cooking was wonderful!!!