‘The Lettuce Diaries’ Review: Salad Days in Old Shanghai

A Westerner visiting China in the 1990s could expect dinner hosts to offer their guest “salad” alongside regional foods like Sichuan mapo tofu or Hunan red-braised pork. The then out-of-place dish was both a sign of respect for the visitor and a way of showing that China was opening up to “outside” ideas, even about cuisine. Yet, a Chinese offering of “sè-lā,” as the dish is pronounced in Mandarin, would often remain untouched. What passed for salad—diced potatoes tossed with Russian dressing, or a half-head of doubtful-looking iceberg drenched in an indeterminate glop—wasn’t very appealing alongside traditional Chinese fare.

Credit Frenchman Xavier Naville for better orienting salad in China. In “The Lettuce Diaries,” Mr. Naville recounts his unlikely story of creating a market there for the kind of salad greens familiar to Westerners.

When he arrived in Shanghai in the summer of 1997, the 27-year-old Mr. Naville was the impeccably

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Beyond Meat signs deal to open production facility near Shanghai

(Reuters) – Beyond Meat Inc <BYND.O> said on Tuesday it had signed a deal to open a production facility near the business hub of Shanghai, as the plant-based meat products maker ramps up its focus on the rapidly growing Chinese market.

Beyond Meat (Jiaxing) Food, a unit of the company, signed a pact with Jiaxing Economic and Technological Development Zone to design and develop manufacturing facilities in the region, it said.

Trial production is expected to begin within months and reach full output in early 2021, the company said, as it looks to expand into Asia, where alternative meat products are yet to experience the popularity boom seen in the United States and parts of Europe.

“Beyond Meat Inc will be the first multinational company focused solely on plant-based meat production to bring its own major production facility into China,” the company said in its statement.

The move comes

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