The industry rings in Chinese New Year


Thursday was the first day of the Chinese New Year and some manufacturers and retailers in Canada were prompting shoppers to join the celebration.

A look through flyers and websites shows many groups are marking the 15-day occasion, long considered the top festivity in the Chinese lunar calendar.

Wong Wing, McCain Foods' line of frozen Asian foods, is emphasizing that Chinese New Year can be celebrated by everyone. The company launched an initiative called “Discover Your Asian Side” this week.

As part of the initiative, consumers can create an avatar of their Chinese sign at They can upload their picture and find out their horoscope for this year, the Year of the Rabbit. Or they can devise their own horoscope and then share it on Facebook or via e-mail.

Wong Wing president Kenneth Carrier said in a release that this is the ideal time for people to educate themselves about the customs and traditions surrounding Chinese New Year. “Chinese New Year is about spending time with family, giving gifts, and eating traditional meals,” he said.

The new Metro flyer for Ontario that starts tomorrow and runs until February 10 advertises "Discover Your Asian Side."

And in the new Loblaws weekly flyer for the same period, there's a two-page section devoted to food for Chinese New Year. It includes promotions on scented rice, sweetened condensed milk, pork riblets and basa fillets. It also advertises egg noodles, green tea and yu choy.

Sobey's also dedicated a lot of flyer space to this holiday. Two pages on a flyer that ended today were filled with goodies for Chinese New Year. It covered everything from shrimp and fish to a box of oranges, dragon fruit from Vietnam and coconut juice.

Over at FreshCo, the new Sobeys discount banner, a flyer that ends today also had a page of products for this festive season--everything from pudding to dumplings to sesame oil.

Longo's had a section in its flyer that was titled "Set the Stage for Chinese New Year." In keeping with the sweet delicacies traditionally enjoyed during these festivities, the section contains chocolates. It's also got pork tenderloin, baby bok choy and various sauces.

In adddition to a Chinese New Year flyer, Walmart Canada has online content for those celebrating. By clicking on a section highlighted on Walmart Canada's homepage, users are taken to a microsite that lists a mixture of food and non-food items that can be used around the holiday. The site also has two YouTube videos, available in both Cantonese and Mandarin, about in-store Chinese New Year promotions.

This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds