Teal Pumpkin Project
Fall is in the air and Halloween is right around the corner! As you’ve driven through your neighborhood or shopped at your local store, have you noticed teal-colored pumpkins on display? Have you wondered what the teal pumpkins are all about?
The Teal Pumpkin Project is an initiative to provide a safe and inclusive trick-or-treating experience to children with food allergies and other medical conditions.
It all started in 2012 with one smart mom in Tennessee, Becky Basalone. As director of her local food allergy support group, she decided to do something special on Halloween for children with food allergies. She painted a pumpkin teal (the color of food allergy awareness), offered non-candy treats, and encouraged others to do the same via social media.
Little did she know, her simple act of kindness would start a whole movement toward inclusivity—when ingesting the “wrong” candy just might be the scariest part of Halloween for the families of 5.9 million children with food allergies in the United States.
Her movement spread quickly across social media and has since been endorsed by many organizations over the past several years, including FARE- Food Allergy Research and Education. The Teal Pumpkin project has proven to be beneficial for children with food allergies and other medical conditions in which most candy is prohibited.
How can I help?
Are you interested in becoming a teal pumpkin home?
According to FARE, your family can participate in 4 simple steps:
- Display a teal pumpkin in front of your home to indicate that you have non-candy treats available. You can find plastic teal pumpkins at major retailers, or you can paint a real one!
- Provide non-food treats at your doorstep such as stickers, spider rings, and glow sticks. Glow-sticks are a great choice to help keep kids safe and visible while trick-or-treating! https://www.foodallergy.org/education-awareness/teal-pumpkin- project/ideas-non-food-treats
- Register your home on the Teal Pumpkin Project map so that local families can find your home: https://www.foodallergy.org/education-awareness/teal-pumpkin-project/map
- Share the Teal Pumpkin Project with your friends and family. Visit this page to find all kind of free resources from sharable images, printable signs, free kids activities, etc. https://www.foodallergy.org/education-awareness/teal-pumpkin-project/free-resources
So, as you’re prepping those costumes, making trick-or-treating plans, and shopping for treats, consider becoming a teal pumpkin home! Together, we can make Halloween safe and fun for every child!