The biggest selling ‘seasonal’ item around this time of the year?
The Christmas Tree, of course!
Earlier, at least in India, it was thought to be a very “Christian” thing and other households never thought of putting up a tree – Diwali marked the end of all festivities for the year. But with globalization and western culture becoming an integral part of all our lives , it has become “holiday season” for all of us too! And in that vein, keeping up the festivities, many houses, thanks to children exposed to stories – online and offline about Santa, Christmas tree has become a ritual, irrespective of the religion.
And that’s the reason why today more and more fir trees are grown all across Denmark with only the export market in sight and believe it or not, China is the world’s largest factory producer of plastic replicas.
The manufacturing of these plastic Christmas trees are not anywhere in the north of the Polar Circle but 300 kms SW of Shanghai, in a city named Yiwu. There are almost 1000 factories there, all of them making Christmas goods only. The produce from Yiwu alone accounts for 60% of the total world output of fir tree, Christmas lights, gilded stars and baubles.
Aisles upon aisles of vendor stalls cover two floors of the “festival arts” section at the International Trade City. They all showcase identical Christmas trees, twinkle lights, and Santa stockings. There, Christmas is a 10-month season that starts in February and ends in November.
Yiwu is a city where it is Christmas every day. For Yiwu’s merchants and factory owners, the Christmas season starts in May, when customers’ purchase orders start trickling in. Factories run at full steam to meet the tasks of manufacturing and shipping their products across the world.
So as the Christmas fervor grows, Yiwu’s success will only grow.