In a couple weeks, kids will be out walking the streets in costumes and enjoying the reward of trick-or-treating! It is very thoughtful to offer the option of non-candy and/or non-food items during Halloween. Food allergies and intolerances can dampen the anticipation of trick-or-treating for many children.
It’s hard to imagine Halloween without candy, especially since companies make specific shapes or colors for the holiday. However, candy has only been linked to Halloween since the 1950’s. This sweet treat tends to be more affordable and convenient than the traditional goodies. It eventually became the acceptable option in the 1970’s in response to fears around food tampering.
Although it is unlikely that homemade treats would be poisoned, there are other reasons to be weary of food items. One example would be if your child has food allergies or intolerances. Another reason is food safety concerns such as someone licking or dropping the spoon, improperly washing hands, cleanliness of the kitchen, and/or pets in the kitchen.
Therefore to avoid food allergen and safety issues, consider non-food treats. Non-candy or non-food items can be enjoyed by more children. Thankfully with online shopping, it’s easy to get Halloween themed packs of goodies! Some options include:
- Boxes of raisins
- Cuties (clementine) or small apples
- Individual microwave popcorn bags
- Mini-bottles of water
- Drink packets (apple cider, hot chocolate, etc.)
*(Make sure the size of these items will not pose a choking hazard for young children.)
- Bouncy balls
- Temporary tattoos
- Toys (vampire teeth, spider rings, etc.)
- Activity Pads
If you are interested in more information about food allergies check out www.foodallergy.org and their Teal Pumpkin Initiative. Make this holiday safe for everyone this year by providing at least one non-candy item for trick-or-treaters!