HANOI, March 8 (Xinhua) -- "I want to sell a meaningful and non-wasteful gift to women on this special day. After many days of thinking, I decided to make flowers from edible ingredients," Tran Hong Chau, a baker in the capital city of Hanoi, told Xinhua.
On Wednesday as International Women's Day is being observed worldwide, in Vietnam the men are tearing their hair out to choose the right gift for their beloved women.
Many present options have been available in the markets, but a bunch of flowers may easily win the hearts of local ladies. Local shops have become very creative in producing different kinds of flowers.
According to Chau, "On the first debut this year, I made around 200 large and small boxes of edible flowers. All the boxes were bought before International Women's Day," which falls on March 8 annually.
Chau's boxes containing roses and orchids are made by using glutinous rice flour, green beans and cheese. For a box of three roses, customers must pay 250,000 Vietnamese dong (11.11 U.S. dollars), while 400,000 Vietnamese dong (17.78 U.S. dollars) will be the price for a box of three orchids.
Meanwhile, a big company in Vietnam's porcelain industry offers porcelain roses, which are also attracting the attention of shoppers.
A 22.5-centimeter-long, pink rose made of porcelain weighing 100 grams costs about 3.2 million Vietnamese dong (142 U.S. dollars). The company said that the roses are all handmade and burn at a temperature of over 1,200 Celsius degree to ensure durability.
In addition, gold dipped roses, which cost around 1.5 million-3 million Vietnamese dong (67-133 U.S. dollars) each, are on "hot sale" despite their high prices.
Roses covered with chocolate are also a new product introduced in the market this year. Hoang Thi Phuong, owner of an imported flower shop on Pho Hue street, told Xinhua that these roses are shipped from the Netherlands.
"The characteristics of the item is that it is fresh rose covered with a colorful layer of chocolate-flavored wax. However, as it is a fresh flower, it will not last more than one week," said Phuong.
After one week, the stem and leaves will wither but the rose petals can linger for two more weeks. Phuong thus advised customers to "cut off the stem and leaves and place the flower petals into a glass cup to display."
Each chocolate-dipped rose will cost around 280,000 Vietnamese dong (12.4 U.S. dollars), said Phuong, adding that costumers usually buy a bunch of several roses worth some 800,000 Vietnamese dong (35.6 U.S. dollars).
"Before appearing in Vietnam, the rose has become a real hit in other countries. I decided to buy a bunch to declare my love," Vu Cong Loc, a fourth-year university student in Hanoi, said, expressing his hope that the new and unique rose will bring him luck on Women's Day.