MURRAY, Utah (ABC 4 News) – Trick or treating is meant to be a fun event, but for some with food allergies it can be a real fright night.
“This is Carter, he has over 30 food allergies, so it’s definitely more of a trick than a treat,” says Megan Lavin.
While 9 year-old Caleb Price who has eosinophilic esophagitis adds, “On Halloween, I don’t get all the treats, so I like this so I can get treats that I can have.”
The 5th Annual Trunk or Treat provides a safe venue for kids and their parents to get the full trick or treat experience without the fear of coming across foods that may be harmful to their kids.
“I like it, it’s fun and I can’t usually have the candy at all the other Trunk or Treats, so this one is cool to get little toys and stuff,” said Morgan Champine, an 11 year-old girl who is allergic to peanuts, tree nuts among other things.
The event is also a way to raise awareness about food allergies. One way they’re doing that is by a viral trend known as the teal pumpkin.
“Tons of people are doing it, and it’s so simple all you have to do is get a pumpkin, paint it teal and that’s a sign for food allergy moms like myself that that’s a safe place to head to,” says Lavin.
Teal pumpkins let trick or treaters know those homes have alternatives to candy, like toys, which you can get at your local dollar store. There are some candy options available for these kids like Skittles, Dum Dums, Starbursts, and Pixy Stix. Label on packaging can also let you know how safe they are for your kids.
“Usually the ingredient label will have something on the front that says ‘Made in a peanut free facility,’ or ‘free of the top 8-allergens,” says Utah Food Allergy Network President Michelle Fogg.
As kids begin to suit up for the holiday weekend. Then can feel safe when they come across a house with a teal pumpkin.
You can learn more about the teal pumpkin project here.
To learn about the Utah Food Allergy Network click here.