Mandarine Oranges and the scent of the Chinese New Year

The ‘Mandarine Orange’ is a sweet, juicy citrus fruit also named ‘Mandarin’ or ‘Mandarine’. Read about why they are the scent of the Chinese New Year.

The role of Mandarine Oranges in the Chinese New Year !

The mandarine orange is a native of China and an important symbol of Chinese traditionand culture, a symbol of ‘good fortune’, with a significant sacral meaning during the Chinese New Year festivities.

Mandarines are symbols of the New Year and the expected positive changes. The shape and colour of mandarines symbolise the Sun and connects with the yang principle (the positive and generative force of nature). A symbol of good fortune, luck and success, mandarines are exchanged between families, friends and colleagues as offerings of goodwill during this time of festivities.

These richly coloured fruits (orange / red / gold) are placed on the family alter in a large pile during the Chinese New Year celebrations and are synoymous with prosperity and wealth. For the same reason, potted plants, rich with hanging mandarine oranges are a favourite indoor decoration during this festive season.

In Cantonese, mandarine are named “gut”, meaning “the lucky tree.” It is an ancient New Year tradition of the Chinese to place pairs of mandarines and red envelopes with money, beside the pillow of every child, in the box with the New Year treats and above the rice container of the home. It is believed this will bring good fortune to the house and its family.

The Chap Goh Meh Festival, the 15th day of the lunar New Year, marks the end of the Chinese New Year festivities and serves traditionally as a day for matchmaking. Young girls throw mandarine oranges into the rivers in the hope of gaining a husband by honouring the full moon. Likewise, young men line the streets straining to gain a glimse of these young ladies who were normally not permitted outside in days gone bye.

Other uses of Mandarine Oranges in China

The essential ingredient in many Chinese sauces is the dried peel of the mandarine orange due to its wonderful citrus oils and other aromatic notes that will richly perfume any dish and remove any oily taste.

On the other hand, in traditional Chinese medicine, the dried peel is used to regulate the flow of the energy of life ( or chi ). Natural philosophers in Old China prescribed the peel as a medical remedy to reduce phlegm, treat abdominal problems and to stimulate healthy digestion.

Mandarine Orange in Perfumery

Peel away the rind of a mandarine orange and out bursts a tempting mix of citrus oils with hints of cloves, ginger, jasmin and orange blossom. There are also undertones of star anise and saffron.

In perfumery, mandarine essential oil is greatly valued in the top notes of many light floral accords and colognes, for its invigorating, juicy sweet and fruity note but also its sensual, floral, neroli-like trail. The essential oil also blends harmoniously with other citrus oils and with many spice oils (nutmeg, cinnamon, clove).

Here at PAIRFUM, we are proud to introduce our new ‘pink grapefruit’ fragrance which contains mandarine essential oil. The addition of mandarin orange oil to the grapefruit accord makes this a truely great fragrance. It is indeed the perfect fragrance for the Chinese New Year.

‘Pink Grapefruit’ is available in the following luxury scented candles and reed diffusers:

  • Reed Diffusers (petite, classic and large size and in the bell, cube and tower shapes)
  • Reed Diffuser refill oil
  • Snow Crystal Candles (classic, large and tin)
  • Flower Wax Candle
  • Message Candle

Other fragrances within the PAIRFUM Collection that exhibit notes of mandarin essential oil are the following perfumes :

  • ‘white nectarine’,
  • ‘pink powder & violet’, and
  • ‘SPA’

Happy Chinese New Year 2015

We would like to wish all of our customers, partners, friends and families a Happy Chinese New Year, the year of the goat !

“Kung Hei Fat Choy”

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