National Consumers League

Food

NCL Food Issues

Ensuring safe treats this Halloween

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Halloween safetyFrom costumes and candy apples to haunted houses and hayrides, Halloween offers activities to please the most demure and daring alike. For parents of children planning to trick-or-treat, however, concerns about the safety of the candy their youngsters collect can dampen the festive mood.

For many Americans both young and old, Halloween stands out as the highlight of the fall. To keep Halloween about treats and terrors, rather than tricks and tummy-aches, follow these safe sweets tips:

  • Don't let your kids go trick-or-treating on an empty stomach! This will help minimize the temptation of snacking on candy that you haven't had a chance to inspect yet.
  • Instruct children not to eat any candy or other treats until a parent has had a chance to inspect their goodies. In addition to preventing youngsters from eating suspect treats, it will also keep concerns about choking, candy overconsumption, and allergenic items at bay – at least while wandering the neighborhood.
  • Throw away baked goods, open items, and anything else not commercially packaged, even if your child thinks it came from a house you know. Following this rule with all items helps avoid dissent over desirable homemade treats.
  • Throw away any treats that look like they may have been tampered with or appear suspect in any way.
  • If you have a child with food allergies, check the ingredients on all items.
  • If you have a small child, look for choking hazards, such as hard candies and chewing gum, and remove them from the stash.
  • If you own a pet, keep candy well out of reach. Chocolate is particularly dangerous for dogs, and consumption of candy – and wrappers – is not good for any pets.

Have a happy, healthy Halloween!