Halloween is right around the corner!
This annual event is a sweet treat for many on the 31st of October, but it isn’t so sweet for the Earth. Have you ever thought about just how much plastic is used decorating front lawns or giving away treats? Or how much litter is left on the roads as children of all ages carry their buckets between houses?
Don’t worry. It’s easy to swap your current Halloween habits for more sustainable practices. Here’s a simple guide to a more sustainable Halloween.
Carving pumpkins for Halloween is a popular pastime that can include the whole family or be turned into a pumpkin carving party between friends. To make this gathering more sustainable, firstly, make sure you’re purchasing your pumpkins from the market to support your local farmers and to keep transport emissions down. Secondly, use the guts of the pumpkin in soups, breads and other recipes, and roast the seeds for a tasty snack. Finally, make sure to compost that empty jack-o-lantern when the season is over.
Most decorations for several holidays come in some form of single-use plastic and Halloween decorations are no different. So, why not make your own? Boxes are great for tombstones or cut out black cats sitting at the window. Basketballs covered in old sheets and hanging from the big tree out the front can give the illusion of a ghost. Homemade decorations can be as simple or as complicated as you like and make it easy to customise the spooky holiday.
Trick or treating can lure the young and the old out into the streets at night, ready to get their hands on some candy and chocolate. A lot of these treats come in some form of single-use plastic though. So, why not make your own? Bake some brownies and cover using a biodegradable wrap. Or make some of your own gummies and store them in small compostable paper bags. It’s a treat for everybody!
Many people do this already but always try to explore a second-hand shop for your Halloween costume needs before you go out and purchase a new one. Not only are there sales around this time of the year but you are sure to find something that you’ll be able to customise to your desire. Or even simpler, look around your home for anything you can repurpose into a costume for you or your pets. Old white sheets will always be classic and old bandages are great for your zombie needs.
Trick or Treating
Stores are known for stocking treat buckets and bags along with all their costumes which makes it easy to grab them without thinking. But what are you going to do with it once the season is over? They can be kept for next season but you’re still purchasing plastic that may just end up in landfill. Instead, use a reusable bag that you have at home – something you can easily decorate to match the costume. Or find a bucket that you don’t use anymore and decorate it too; something you can keep for years longer than you would have kept it for.
So, now that you know how to be sustainable this Halloween, go out there and be spooky!