Can eating these candies make you rich?
Tehran (KNA) - It's a classic Lunar New Year scene: Family and friends huddled over a red and gold candy box, unwrapping edible treats and shelling nuts.
Though lesser known, these exquisitely decorated containers are as essential a part of the celebration as firecrackers and red envelopes.
Every year, families pull them out from the back of the cupboard before the start of Lunar New Year, or Spring Festival, which lasts for 15 days from the first day of the lunar calendar (February 16 in 2018).
It's a time of year when children are actually encouraged to devour sweets -- all in the hopes of experiencing an influx of fortune in the year to come.
Hosts have to make sure each of the boxes' trays -- there are usually three to nine detachable compartments -- are stocked with specific "fortune" candies, which symbolize wealth, happiness and luck.
"Cyun hap (LNY candy boxes) have a history that can be traced back for more than 1,000 years," says Gloria Chan, spokesperson for the Hong Kong Culture Heritage Studies and Promotion Association."
The traditional word 'cyun' means 'to put together, or to bring together.'
"By putting all the fortune candies in one place, a cyun hap symbolizes bringing luck together and wishing blessings for the coming year.
"It's important to note the word "candy" should be used loosely and can refer to anything from seeds to dried fruit.