More than 2,500 undertakers and funeral industry planners arrived in Hong Kong this past weekend to participate in the 2013 Asia Funeral and Cemetery Expo.
The expo opened its doors on Thursday for three days, allowing vendors, suppliers and people just planning ahead to browse through Asia’s largest funeral trade fair and conference. On display were the new trends sweeping the funeral-planning world, including piano-themed caskets and other themed afterlife goods.
Organizers call the event a place for “practical ideas on global trends regarding the management and operation of funeral facilities and services,” which many in Hong Kong seem to be interested in.
One of the highlights of the expo was the wide array of specialty caskets and displays of the latest methods of embalming and cremation.
The South China Morning Post took a look at some of the more unique trends that were displayed this year. Aside from the piano coffins, other odd designs included a casket lined with a Last Supper picture. The expo also delved into planning for pet funerals, offering urns for cremation. Aside from that, the talents of post-mortem makeup artists were on display, as well as demonstrations of embalming techniques.
Addressing death head-on is not something new for the usually superstitious Chinese. Earlier this year, fake funerals being held for living people were used to help those Chinese citizens suffering with depression. The idea was for the fake-deceased to appreciate their life more by lying in the casket and listening to a loved one give a fake eulogy. The fake funerals were aimed at offering a new perspective for those who were considering death as an escape.