How Halloween is Opening the Door to Food Allergy Awareness

How Halloween is Opening the Door to Food Allergy Awareness

by Stacey Stratton, FAACT's Publications Manager

This year, it’s not just the trick-or-treaters knocking, but opportunity is knocking too. Teal pumpkins are popping up on porches nationwide. Media, retail, and businesses are beginning to take notice and are starting to promote teal pumpkins. 

Here are 5 easy ways you can help increase awareness in your community:

1. Paint a pumpkin teal or place a poster on your door to let others know you have non-food treats available. Besides providing safe treats for children with dietary restrictions, it’s bringing attention and helping others become familiar with the meaning. This is also great conversation starter for family, friends and guests who visit your home.

2. Hand out food allergy information to the parents of the trick-or-treaters. FAACT has a FREE downloadable flyer - "10 FAACTs about Food Allergies."

3. Talk to your child’s teacher about bringing “teal” into the classroom. Find out the possibility of having a non-food or allergy-friendly party. If you’re able, help out at the party and offer to supply ideas for allergy-friendly activities. This can allow you to watch over your child during the party, and show others how easy it is to have fun celebrating Halloween, without the allergens. (If you need ideas for fun games and crafts, visit FAACT's Halloween section).

4. See if the principal will place a teal pumpkin at the school and give parents information, so they can participate, too. If you’re able, supply the school with a list of ideas for non-food and/or allergy-friendly items, such as FAACT’s Bookmarks and Posters.

5. Ask family, friends, and local businesses to help spread the word. I’ve seen many Facebook posts where retail stores have placed a teal pumpkin with an informational poster and items for sale. Let businesses know, not only are they helping children with food allergies, it’s also a great sales tactic. They can place items they sell next to the pumpkin, so customers can easily purchase these items to get involved. For example: At the home improvement store, have teal paint and brushes. At stores like Target and Walmart, have some of the small, non-food items they have available for sale.

It’s wonderful to see how these pumpkins are growing and helping increase food allergy awareness. So, grab your paint brush….and let’s go spread the TEAL!