A Changing of the Fortune-Cookie Writing Guard

Meet Wonton Food's new chief fortune writer

Time magazine’s Olivia B. Waxman had the scoop in late January. Wonton Food Inc.’s chief financial officer and chief fortune writer, David Lau, was ceding the latter title to James Wong, a 41-year-old nephew of the company’s founder.

This week, Wong has spoken to Canadian radio news magazine As It Happens. When asked by host Helen Mann how Lau initially got the fortune-cookie writing assignment, he gave a very pragmatic answer:

“When we first started the company, he [David] was the only person that has proper English. He just kind of fell into that role, I guess. Also because of his sense of humor.”

Wonton Food, which operates facilities in Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan, is the largest producer of fortune cookies in the U.S. Multiple people–or as Wong calls them, a “vetting committee”–read through all prospective fortune cookie writings and approve the content. Wong’s expected output falls right in line with today’s prodigious online content volumes; he says he is expected to write several thousand fortunes a year.

CNN had a great profile of Lau last summer. Read that here.