Anyone involved in sourcing from China has likely been preparing for Chinese New Year for several weeks. The “new year,” also known as the Spring Festival, is marked by the lunisolar Chinese calendar. The festivities usually start the day before the new year and continue until the Lantern Festival, the 15th day of the new year. During that time, factories and other businesses are closed.
What happens during Chinese New Year?
Chinese New Year is the most significant holiday in China. It’s a time when the Chinese return to their home towns and celebrate with friends and family. Learn more about the cultural aspects here.
For those involved in manufacturing within the region, there’s an urgency prior to the holiday to ensure timely shipments. This is where proactive planning is helpful.
How can you plan for timely shipments?
At Pro QC, account managers usually start reaching out to clients in October. We want to make sure clients are aware of the holiday schedule and also have an opportunity to request inspections of any pending orders. We are able to contact the suppliers and let them know that an inspection will be required. Coordinating the schedule allows us to keep clients informed of any delays.
What happens after the holiday?
Many workers will not return to their pre-holiday positions. Many will use the time off to look for employment closer to their families, or at manufacturers that have reputations of higher wages and/or working conditions.
In addition to the rush of orders waiting after the holiday, the staffing issue also presents quality concerns. We urge all of our clients to inspect orders for a period of time before and after the holiday to ensure consistency. With the increase in orders and staffing concerns, quality issues are very common during this time.
Why a monkey?
Each Chinese New Year is characterized by one of 12 animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac. The Chinese zodiac is divided into 12 blocks (or houses) just like its western counterpart, but with the major difference being that each house has a time-length of one year instead of one month. This year it’s the Year of the Monkey, the ninth animal in the cycle
恭喜发财 / 恭喜發財 (Gōngxǐ fācái)