You may have begun to notice teal pumpkins popping up as we near Halloween. Halloween has become a highly anticipated day for children. With trick-or-treating and costume planning, Halloween has become an exciting and time-honored tradition.
So, what’s the deal with teal pumpkins? The Teal Pumpkin Project was launched by FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) in 2014 and was inspired by a mom named Becky Basalone who started the Teal Pumpkin Project in her own community. This has now spread to all 50 states and 12 countries.
Why use the color Teal? Well, that is because Teal is the color of food allergy awareness and Teal has been used to raise awareness of food allergies for about 20 years. The purpose of the Teal Pumpkin Project is to raise awareness of potentially life-threatening food allergies, it encourages people to hand out alternative treats such as non-food items and promotes the inclusion of all trick-or-treaters so that children with food allergies or other medical conditions can safely trick-or-treat on Halloween.
By displaying a Teal Pumpkin outside of your home, you are letting children with food allergies know that this location offers alternative treats for those who may have an allergic reaction to certain foods as well as for children whom candy is not an option. It’s easy to get involved! You can purchase a Teal colored Pumpkin at your local stores, paint you own pumpkins or you can also visit the FARE website and download a free printable sign to display outside of your home. You can also add your home to the Teal Pumpkin Project Map on the FARE website. The next step is to pick alternative treats. Here are some ideas for alternatives to candy:
- Glow sticks
- Bracelets or Necklaces
- Mini Slinkies
- Bouncy Balls
- Spider rings
- Vampire fangs
- Creepy crawly bugs
If you choose to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project, you can still give out candy as you usually would, however, it is very important to keep the non-food treats in a separate container. For example, you could keep the candy treats in an orange colored container and non-edible treats in a Teal colored container. Another way to get involved is to spread the word about the Teal Pumpkin Project. Social media is one of the best and easiest ways to spread the word. Be sure to use #tealpumpkinproject every time you post! Happy Halloween!