Phoebe Lai credits her time at UCLA in California for planting a seed that has since grown into a very successful business in Macau. The former TIS grad is the co-founder of Greens Kitchen & Juicery, a whole foods kitchen that offers a variety of healthy eats and specialty juices. We caught up with Phoebe recently to learn more about her business and her plans for the future.
How did the idea for Greens Kitchen & Juicery come about?
When I lived in LA, I learned to live a healthy and balanced lifestyle. I lived in the West Hollywood area where there are unlimited healthy options like salad bars, juice shops, yoga studios…even a shop for vegan dog food! I knew that personal well being would be a continuous trend and so I started to do more research into it. After returning to Macau for the holidays and experiencing the lack of healthy options, I saw a need and a great business opportunity to start something here. A big part of it was also because I needed to find somewhere to eat for myself and so Greens was born!
What other other things is Greens Kitchen & Juicery involved in and why are they important to the evolution of the store?
Besides retail, our second big focus is education. We believe that a healthy lifestyle is very important and we want to spread this philosophy in Macau. We have hosted seminars and workshops and have also operated pop-up stores at different companies and schools. We teach people how to choose the right kind of food for their body and why it is so important. We also suggest recipes and exercises that are tailored to the specific audience group. In this past year, we have been really focused on making healthy food more accessible for local schools as youth are our future.
What do envision for Greens Kitchen & Juicery going forward?
I truly hope that Greens will touch everyone in the city at some point in their life and bring positive change to them. My short term goal is to introduce Greens to more schools and companies. My long term goal is to develop a better distribution system and make Greens more accessible to everyone.
As a former TIS grad and now a successful businesswoman, what advice do have for our grade 12 students?
I truly encourage everyone to go to university if you can. It will be the best time of your entire life. Secondly, pick something that you truly are passionate about as your major. Last but not least – it’s okay to not know what you want.