Pumpkins, costumes and lots of treats: Halloween is almost here. Trick-or-treating is one of the main activities children usually do on that day. To make sure that you and your children stay safe and don’t risk a foodborne illness, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends following these tips:

Food Allergies

Food allergy symptoms can appear at any age. You can even develop an allergy to food you have consumed for years without any problems. While any food can cause an adverse reaction, there are eight types of food that account for around 90% of all reactions: Eggs, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, wheat and soy. Common Halloween treats often contain ingredients like nuts or milk that can cause an adverse reaction. If you or your child suffer from a food allergy, you should always check the label to ensure the allergen is not present, and take extra care if your child receives home-baked goods without any labeling.

Safe treats

Home-baked goods are delicious but be careful! You never know what ingredients are inside. The FDA recommends to eat only candy that is commercially wrapped and doesn’t show any sign of tampering such as unusual discoloration or tiny pinholes. If anything looks suspicious, throw it away.

Choking hazards

Keep an eye on very young children. Small treats can very easily be swallowed whole and therefore they pose a danger – they should be removed. Small toys and costume accessories are also dangerous for toddlers.

Snacking at home

Trick-or-treating allures children to eat the treats immediately after receiving them. Make sure your children don’t snack on treats while they are trick-or-treating by giving them a light snack before they go out. Afterwards you and your child can have a look together in the goody bag and check if there is anything that can harm your child.

Enjoy your Halloween!
Further readings:
Halloween Food Safety Tips: https://www.fda.gov/food/resourcesforyou/consumers/ucm187021.htm