Spookily handy top tips to reduce, reuse and recycle at Halloween
- Around 18,000 tonnes of pumpkin are thrown away each year
- 7 million Halloween costumes thrown away every year
- The average child consumes around 3 cups of sugar from sweets during Halloween
- Number of sweets wasted? Who knows!
Halloween is now one of the one of the biggest events in the annual calendar. And while it’s certainly a time for us to come together and have fun, there are things that we can all do to limit any negative impacts on the environment, ourselves and tackle plastic pollution. Here are our top tips on how:
· Think twice before buying new – Kids in particular love to dress up, but if yours are growing fast it’s not always practical to use the same costume every year. However, we spend £millions on costumes each year, with many of these ending up in the bin after short use. Consider purchasing from charity shops, check out local for sale sites, ask friends if they’d like to do a costume swap or even better, get creative and recycle an old outfit.
· Sweet and (plastic) alternatives – On average children consume around three cups of sugar from sweets at Halloween (many of them wrapped in unrecyclable plastic), and while of course we're not looking to ruin a treat, we’d probably all agree that this is too much. Kids love the process of Halloween - getting dressed up, joining with friends and engaging with neighbours; it’s not just about outcome of a mountain of sweets. There’s no need to go crazy with the quantity and it could be mixed up with some alternatives. Last year a big hit in my household were tangerines which had scary faces drawn on them.
· Start a Halloween decoration box – seven million costumes and unknown quantities of other Halloween paraphernalia are thrown away each year. With Halloween now a firm fixture in many of our calendars, consider letting these decs and costumes join the xmas ones in the attic ready for another year.
· Get baking - 18,000 tonnes of pumpkins are thrown away each year, that’s the same weight as 1,500 double decker buses. There are loads of surprisingly great recipes to use this up; like pumpkin and chocolate cake. Any leftover pumpkin can be recycled with food or composted. For more recipe ideas check out www.lovefoodhatewaste.com
Check before you chuck – A key thing we can all do to help tackle plastic pollution is to make sure that we are disposing of it properly and recycling all we can. Plastic bottles can all be recycled and most local authorities now provide a service to recycle a wider range of plastic packaging. However, it’s best not to include non-packaging items in the recycling, which can be made of different types of non-recyclable plastic. We can help you check out what you can and can’t recycle at www.recyclenow.com/local-recycling