Who: Mr Justin Chou, 28, co-founder of informal vegetarian restaurant chain Greendot, which has 10 shops right here, together with at Paya Lebar Square, VivoCity and Bugis Junction.
His mother and father personal vegetarian meals merchandise producer Growthwell Group and likewise run Lotus Kitchen at Chinatown Point and Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant at Quality Hotel in Balestier.
Mr Chou, who is married to a pre-school instructor, additionally just lately opened Vairy, a vegetarian meals stall at Kampung Admiralty Hawker Centre in Woodlands Drive 71.
What impressed you to begin Greendot?
In the previous, there weren’t plenty of vegetarian choices within the malls. It was additionally robust to get buddies to come and have a vegetarian meal.
I noticed folks more and more choosing meat-free or plant-based merchandise, particularly within the United States.
I began brainstorming after I was doing my nationwide service, and began the business after.
WHAT WILL YOUR LAST MEAL BE?
A easy home-cooked meal with my household – simply fried tomato egg, spinach and a bowl of clear soup. It’s all concerning the heat of my household.
You already have a sequence of eating places. Why begin Vairy?
It is an entrepreneurship improvement programme for administration trainees who work with us. Plus, we wish to protect hawker tradition.
Those who work with us begin from scratch to study operations they usually can go into the workplace to study advertising and marketing and human sources as properly.
I consider in such a tradition within the company, the place it’s significant for folks to be part of one thing and to encourage creativity.
After all, Greendot began as a stall in Temasek Polytechnic in 2011.
It expanded into malls two years later.
So what was it like rising up vegetarian?
Since there weren’t many choices, we might typically eat vegetarian beehoon.
We would additionally go to Lingzhi Vegetarian, which has shops at Liat Towers and Velocity.
I wish to eat noodles, so even when my noodles had been simply tossed in vegetarian oyster sauce and chilli, that is adequate for me.
Since vegetarian meals could not have many layers of flavour, I like so as to add cheese to my meals – whether or not it is noodles, rice or bread.
I am a lacto-ovo-vegetarian – so I do eat eggs and dairy merchandise.
Have you ever tasted meat?
I by accident ate fishballs at a celebration, as I assumed the whole lot served was vegetarian. It tasted bizarre, as a result of meat might not be as tasty to a vegetarian.
What is your favorite drink?
The All Berry Bang drink from juice bar chain Boost. It has strawberry yogurt, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and apple juice.
What attention-grabbing traits have you observed from working Greendot?
My co-founder Fu Yong Hong is a “flexi-tarian” – and it is a massive demographic we get at Greendot. They are health-conscious diners, particularly ladies aged 25 to 45, who simply wish to have a wholesome meal that isn’t a salad or soup. About 70 per cent of our diners are feminine.
In malls, I see that fast-food eating places draw youngsters, whereas the fellows go to the foodcourt and replenish on financial system rice. And locations akin to protein-focused salad store The Daily Cut entice the gymgoers.
What vegetarian meals would you advocate abroad?
I just like the vegetarian eating tradition in Taiwan. There is a sequence of hip meat-free eating places known as Mia Cucina, which has loads of salads for sharing, cheese and dairy merchandise.
You would see ladies all dressed-up eating there – it has develop into a part of their way of life.
Melbourne additionally has an incredible vegan cafe tradition. At many cafes, you get recent meals, together with avocados, cheese and toast. Matcha Mylkbar has vegan eggs, burgers and smoothies – and the meals appears very nice.
In Hong Kong, the plant-based Green Common chain presents a Beyond Burger the place the patty is made with plant-based protein.
Tell us about your long-term dream.
I wish to encourage 100 million folks within the world to go meat-free.
We are additionally planning to veganise Greendot.
We are already engaged on the best way to change eggs in our merchandise.
We may also work with numerous proteins akin to whey and pea.
A decade in the past, folks known as meat alternate options mock meat. Five years from now, they’ll name it meals innovation.
At many meals conferences I attend, everyone seems to be speaking about different proteins.
The method we eat meat is unsustainable and I hope that my company will clear up meals points in the future.
Besides working your eating places, what else are you concerned in?
I consider in engaged on numerous start-ups and I’m creating a B2B (business to business) tech start-up known as Glife.
Just like how Meicai -an e-vendor of agricultural merchandise in China – has taken off and is now value $2.eight billion, I may also create a platform for vegetarian suppliers to provide to eating places.
We are moving on all fronts – not simply in meals and beverage, but additionally in tech, e-commerce and meals innovation.
If you may maintain a cocktail party, who would you invite?
I’d invite Tesla founder and chief government Elon Musk, Alibaba Group co-founder and government chairman Jack Ma, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and American basketball participant LeBron James. They all symbolize excellence of their respective fields.