The festive season is drawing closer, and Halloween is the spooky event that will send shivers through you when you see the waste that is produced! Not to be a bar humbug about the fun festivities that come with a happy Halloween, but to shed some light on the dark disposable items and how to avoid them.
The Halloween costumes we purchase will amount to the equivalent of 83 million plastic bottles ending up in landfill over halloween (*1). So as a sustainable substitute why not create something from your wardrobe. Maybe theres an old dress waiting to become a corpse bride, or a shirt needing some patches to be styled as a solum scarecrow. Pinterest is a great place to get ideas to spruce up an old outfit and become someone else for the evening. By doing so you can help dwindle the 7 million costumes that get thrown away each year as part of Halloween (*2).
Pumpkins are another item that we seem to forget is actually a food source rather than just a piece of art for a few days to end its little orange (or green) life at the bottom of our bins. After Halloween eve 18000 tonnes of pumpkins are sent to landfill (*3). Like all food waste when entering landfill as they rot they produce methane gas, which is contributing to climate change, so why not make a difference this Halloween and put that pumpkin to good use!
At this cosy Autumnal time by the evenings its usually dark and wet, and most of us like to snuggle down in a warm knit, however thats not to say you can’t still get busy, after carving pumpkins this year, get in the halloween spirit by cooking up a pumpkin flavoured storm. An all time favourite has to be the sweetly southern pumpkin pie. Spiced with all things nice, cloves, cinnamon and ginger, pumpkin pie is a great way to ease into festive spirits, bonus it tastes delicious too!
Who can say no to a heart warming soup on these cold grey days, pumpkin soup is another way to utilise those carved pumpkins. Quick and easy to prepare over one evening, it can last a week of work lunches or a lazy dinner. Not only will you be saving on waste but be nourishing your body too!
Some other tips for halloween is to say no to plastic in the form of glitter. Already a micro plastic, once you have washed away your glittery face, it enters waterways and eventually the oceans. There are some gorgeous alternatives which are biodegradable and won’t cause the fishes (and us) any harm.
Finally for those of you that really push the boat out with costumes and pick and prod at your eyes with fashion contact lenses, please don’t flush them away either, most contacts are made of plastic and will cause harm in our waterways.
No matter what your thoughts on halloween, whether you doll up to the nines in blood and gore, or hide away by candlelight, you can try something new and have a healthy happy Halloween to help our planet.
Written by Daisy Culbert