Did you get dressed up in a new costume on Saturday night, or are you saving it for tonight? Do you have a carefully carved, scary pumpkin lit up in your home? Are you taking some little ones out this evening in hope that they can collect some sweets and chocolates from nearby neighbours?
There's no doubt that halloween week brings with it loads of fun with family and friends. It's nostalgic for those of us who have thrown in the towel on the festive craziness, and an amazing tradition for those who keep the halloween nightmares (I mean, dreams) alive.
The bad news though is the huge amounts of waste that halloween brings with it. 8 million pumpkins will end up in landfill this year, which according to The Guardian "could make enough pumpkin pie for an entire nation". 40% of Brits purchase a pumpkin to carve each Halloween, and of those, over 60% admit to discarding the insides. That's a sad outcome for a whole lot of pumpkin that could have become soup, pie or even a pumpkin mash with your dinner. For those of you who have a tupperware of pumpkin in your fridge, and aren't sure what to do with it, here are some ideas by BBC Good Food. There are so many delicious ways to use the inside of your pumpkin rather than chucking it in the bin.
The food waste of halloween pales in comparison to the plastic waste generated during halloween. Costumes alone are estimated to create 2,000 tonnes of plastic waste this year. Environmental charity Hubbub have investigated costumes made from 19 major retailers, and found that 83% are made from oil-pasted plastics (mostly polyester). It seems crazy that we all have friends (or ashamedly, some of us reading this) that preach about single-use plastic bottles or non-recyclable coffee lids, and yet indulge in a plastic-based costume that will be thrown away by this weekend. It's usually not due to hypocrisy but more that there's a lack of awareness. We need to spread the word for next year: eco & non-toxic make-up, bat wings made from your broken umbrella, or rented costumes are the way forward.