A snobbish French executive arrives in Shanghai with his expensive shoes and ties, expecting a short career-boosting posting before returning to Paris.
Instead, he ends up deep in China’s manure-soaked fields, buying and selling vegetables, all because he has convinced himself that he can single handedly drag Chinese agriculture into the 21st Century. It didn’t work out as he planned.
The Lettuce Diaries is a revealing and humorous memoir of entrepreneurship, doubling as a primer for all seeking to do business in China, and explaining things the French executive, Xavier Naville, only learned the hard way — like humility and listening to people, and how the Chinese economy is both totally different and a huge opportunity.
About The Author
Xavier was born in France and in 1997 moved to China where he built Creative Food, which is today a key supplier to major restaurant chains across the country including McDonald’s, KFC, and Starbucks. He sold the company to Bakkavor Group PLC from the UK in 2007 and continued to run the business until 2011. Xavier is now a principal at Vision Management Consultants and works on strategy and M&A projects in the food sector for multinationals in China. He is also a Strategy & Execution coach for CEOs and their leadership teams. He currently lives in Oakland, California, and divides his time between there and China.