Bottle and can collector Thomas Yeung Hin is under pressure to give up his hobby or lose his bed in his brother's house. Mr Yeung's ever-increasing collection of drink containers is crowding the small Sai Ying Pun flat he shares with his sibling and sister-in-law and straining family relationships. 'My brother has been asking me to throw them away since I came to live with him four years ago,' says Mr Yeung, 27, who confesses to not knowing how many cans and bottles he has. 'But I can't do it. They are my treasure.' Mr Yeung first started collecting Coca-Cola cans in secondary school. Those days, he was living at home with his parents. But in the interests of storage space he decided to concentrate on local brands, such as Vita, Connaught Beverage, and Sun Spot. Some of the brands were short-lived, others continue today. 'Soda and other beverages have been on the island for more than 100 years. Some of my bottles are as old as the island itself,' he says. Mr Yeung believes Hong Kong's consumer history can be traced through his collection. He picks up one of his favorites - a thick torpedo-shaped bottle with images of dragons and a Watsons' Pharmacy logo engraved in the glass. 'This bottle was made in about 1900, when only pharmacies were allowed to produce soda,' he explains. Besides history, the bottles and cans provide a window on the development of Hong Kong's manufacturing industry, advances in technology, improvement in people's living standards, and changes in people's tastes, in everything from soft drinks to beer and health tonics. Mr Yeung's hobby has made him a regular visitor to local beaches, Mongkok antique markets and deserted houses. Recycling has made his task difficult. He also scours old newspapers for information about antique containers, the contents and the makers. Mr Yeung shares his collection with the public through his website - www.beveragecollect.com.hk - which was launched in June last year. His aim is also to provide information for new collectors. It is not just time and energy Mr Yeung has invested in his collection, but money. He spends a lot of his salary, which he earns as a product designer, on bottles and cans. Not everything comes cheap: his most expensive extravagance is a Vitasoy bottle which cost him more than $10,000 at an antiques market. 'It was expensive because the producer used to reclaim all its bottles and this is only one of three or four that has survived.' Since going online, Mr Yeung has had approaches from people in Taiwan and the mainland, seeking to buy his collection. 'I'm collecting them not to trade or for the money. I love them. That's the only reason,' he says, admiring his collection in four specially designed cabinets on a wall. In keeping with his brother's wishes, he has been planning to move into his own flat with his collection in a year or two. But to complicate his solitary life, Mr Yeung has got himself a girlfriend. He says that while she is happy to support his interest, he does not know yet whether she is willing to live with him and his bottles.