Be cautious of what your kids collect trick-or-treating! With the large amount of candy handed out and consumed, parents should take extra precautions to make sure and check their children’s Halloween bags beforehand and discard anything that may not be safe. *Parent Tip: Try and get your children to eat prior to trick-or-treating to avoid snacking on candy before you can check it.
After trick-or-treating take your child’s candy bucket and spread it out on the counter so you can skim and sort treats before consuming. Things to look for:
UNRECOGNIZED CANDY WRAPPERS
Look for candy wrappers you do not recognize, unlike the well-known candies such as Reeses, Snickers, and KitKat. While we know the traditional brands anything that seems or looks unfamiliar may be something to double check.
WRAPPERS THAT ARE RIPPED, TORN, OR OPEN
Any candy that may have been opened including a corner being torn or wrappers that seems to be partially open are not only susceptible to germs from other candy wrappers, but may have additional safety concerns.
CANDY THAT APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN TAMPERED WITH OR LOOKS SUSPICIOUS
If something appears off, toss it! Candy that is in a strange wrapper may have been re-wrapped and has a higher chance of tampering-discard and continue checking.
While getting homemade treats from neighbors, friends and family is fun, receiving any homemade treat while trick-or-treating from an unknown house or person may not be safe. From food handling hygiene as well as food allergy concerns, toss anything that you recognize as homemade.
If your children have food allergies make sure to sort and rid of any candy that may cause an allergic reaction. Candy you do not recognize or know the ingredients, check as well. Some candy may not contain tree nuts, however they could have been manufactured in a factory that produces other products with nuts.
AGE APPROPRIATE CANDIES
For younger children check for hard candies, gum or taffy. Treats that can be hard to eat or cause a choking hazard may be better off in the trash or given to someone older.
By taking five minutes to scan your child’s Halloween bag and rule out anything suspicious, you can enjoy the fun of trick-or-treating while taking appropriate safety measures. Overall it’s better to toss a few pieces of candy in the trash than risk anyone in your home’s health and safety.