Sunday, September 25, 2022
HomeSocial NewsUK Media feature Joss Paper and Funeral Envelope in Chinese Dish Recipes

UK Media feature Joss Paper and Funeral Envelope in Chinese Dish Recipes

With Chinese New Year around the corner, UK media outlets The Guardian and BBC decided to publish recipes around dishes during the festive period.

Unfortunately, the image accompanying the recipes showed joss paper, ancient Chinese coins and an envelope given out at funerals (吉儀) to go with recipes. 

On BBC’s website, the finished dish for the recipe ‘Lo mein with scallops and Tenderstem broccoli’ was accompanied by a red packet and an envelope given out at funerals, which even contains the name ‘吉儀’ (jíyí) on the surface of the envelope.

Attendees of a funeral will receive the jíyí envelope after the ceremony traditionally in Chinese customs. It is a small gift of thanks given by the family of the deceased to those who attend a funeral. The envelope normally contains a piece of tissue and candy and a coin.

Attendees are told to spend the money and eat the candy as soon as possible after receiving the envelope, while the tissue is used to wipe away tears.

On The Guardian’s website, their ‘Pork and crab dumplings with spicy sour sauce’ dish features a side of longevity joss paper for decorative purposes.

Joss paper is traditionally burnt by the Chinese to pay respects to the departed and for ancestral worship. They can also be used during the worship of deities in Chinese folk religion.

Vivienne Chow, a correspondent for art market website, artnet, noticed and tweeted about this incident.

BBC Food has responded and apologised to Chow on Twitter, saying it is ‘very sorry for this error’ and that they ‘have taken down the image and will investigate the situation further and review our processes to put more rigorous checks in for styling’.


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