Every 12th year the Year of the Ox is celebrated. Within the Chinese Zodiac, the Ox is known to be honest in nature, diligent, dependable, strong, and determined. These reflect traditional conservative characteristics, all values held with respect in the Chinese community.
Friday the 12th of February 2021 will be CNY which then runs until the eve of the Lantern Festival on the 26th of February. It is on and during this time that gifts of Oranges, Kumquats, Tangerines, and Pomelos are given as gifts to bring good luck and happiness throughout the year. Both the words for oranges and tangerines closely resemble the words for luck and wealth in Chinese.
The CNY travel season in China usually begins 15 days before CNY and can last for the duration of the celebrations. In 2016 it was predicted that there would be 2.9 billion passenger journeys during that year's Chunyun season. It has been called the largest annual human migration in the world.
A large segment of the Chinese population live, study and work in cities far away from their home town and so travel back for CNY celebrations with friends and family for this very important tradition. On one occasion when I was travelling during the CNY celebrations, I found it nearly impossible to book travel on planes, trains, or buses, especially between major cities.
CNY celebrations affect manufacturing to the extent that most, if not all, factories and businesses close for an indefinite period to celebrate the holiday. The duration of the closure depends on the management of the individual company and can range from the expected holiday period up to an extended shutdown of two or more weeks. Production planning for the shutdown of production starts in early January as products in transit need to be delivered to either port for dispatch or domestic customers before the national shutdown.
This holiday is becoming more relevant in the production cycle of the west. This is due to the increased demand of the Chinese manufacturing base and this year it has been highlighted by the Covid-19 restrictions.
Franklin Direct is very aware of the issues surrounding CNY and there knock on effects and works closely with customers to advise alternative ordering and supply procedures that can mitigate production and logistical issues.
Please contact to discuss.
Following are some interesting traditions that are practiced for CNY:
- Two of the most common food symbols for CNY are Tangerines, representing wealth, and Oranges, a popular symbol for good luck.
- Noodles are a staple of the Chinese diet and when served during CNY noodles shouldn’t be cut or broken as long noodles represent a nice long life.
- A whole chicken is a popular dish during CNY, it represents togetherness and rebirth and is symbolic of the family, and also signifies unity and prosperity as a group.
- A popular CNY family tradition is to get together and make boiled dumplings. If you plan on following this CNY tradition, encourage everyone in the preparation and conceal a coin in one of the dumplings in the batch. If the person who finds the dumpling doesn’t chip a tooth, he’s destined to have a very, very lucky year.
When we hear of the extent of the practices the Chinese people practice over CNY we can perhaps categorise many as superstitious, but I would argue that they are more traditional and many are a celebration and a great way to bring harmony and charm to the families involved.
So, HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR 2021!