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6 min read

Are you prepared for the inevitable Halloween hangover (the candy kind)? 

One hangover cure that comes to mind would involve big brands making a big change to their packaging. At the very least, they should make these tiny, novelty, holiday, one-bite-candies with biodegradable and/ or compostable packaging. I’m looking at you Nestle, Hersheys, Mars Global, and PepsiCo.

No one wants to spoil Halloween for the kids and I would really miss seeing all the creative and adorable costumes so, while we push the brands to change their packaging (Halloween 2020?), we have a few other ideas for reducing waste as you sort through all that loot with the kids tonight!

  • Cash for Candy
    Did you know that some Seattle dentists have a candy buyback program? This program allows kids to trade their candy for cash in partnership with Operation Gratitude who then sends the treats to US troops overseas.

    Seattle
    Seattle Kids Dentistry
    945 Elliott Ave. W., #101 Seattle, WA 98119
    Kids 12 and under can get $1 per pound (up to 10 pounds per child) for their leftover candy. Bonus: Come in your costume and get an extra $2!

    When: Nov. 1 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; Nov. 4 & 5, 2019 from 8 a.m.–4 p.m.

    Keith B. Wong, DDS, MS Specialist in Orthodontics
    1818 E. Mercer St., Suite 200 Seattle, WA 98112

    Dr. Wong is teaming up with Rocket Taco on Capitol Hill for his annual candy buyback. Dr. Wong will be purchasing your unwrapped candy at $1 per pound for Operation Gratitude’s holiday care packages. Kids who turn in their unwanted treats will also receive dental goodie bags. In addition to selling back candy, Dr. Wong is encouraging kids to write letters and/or draw pictures to send to the troops overseas.

    When: November 2, 2019 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at Rocket Taco on Capitol Hill

    Eastside Art of Pediatric Dentistry
    914 140th Ave. N.E., Suite 101 Bellevue, WA 98005
    Dr. Yu Ong of Art of Pediatric Dentistry will buyback unopened Halloween candy at $1 per pound (up to 5 pounds per child) the week after Halloween. For each dollar Art of Pediatric Dentistry pays to a child, it will match with a donation to the American Red Cross. All candy collected will be sent to Operation Gratitude. Note: all kids must be accompanied by an adult.

    When: Nov. 1 & 4, 2019 from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

    Lake Hills Orthodontics
    15446 Bel-Red Rd., Suite 310 Redmond, WA 98052
    Lake Hills Orthodontics teams up with four area dentist offices for their 12th Annual Halloween Candy Buy Back and Food Drive. Kids ages 15 & under can bring their unopened Halloween candy, plus two canned food items to donate to Renewal Food Bank, the week after Halloween and receive $1 per pound (up to 10 pounds per child). All of the candy and food collected during this year's buyback will be donated to the Renewal Food Bank. As part of the program, Lake Hills Orthodontics will also make a matching monetary donation to Treehouse and will award one lucky winner a $50 Amazon gift card, so be sure to enter the raffle drawing!

    When: Nov. 4 & 5, 2019 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

    Additional drop-off locations:
    Redmond Kids Dentistry 16650 N.E. 79th St. Redmond, WA 98052
    Cosmos Dentistry 1515 116th Ave. N.E., #301, Bellevue, WA 98004 Bel-Red
    Pediatric Dentistry 15446 Bel-Red Rd. Redmond, WA 98052
    Dr. Ellie Tabaraie Family Dentistry 1855 156th Ave. N.E. Bellevue, WA 98007

    Eastside Kids Dentistry
    8630 164th Ave. N.E., Suite 202 Redmond, WA 98052
    Kids 12 & under in costumes can bring their unopened Halloween candy and receive $1/pound (up to 5 pounds per child). All candy collected will be donated to Operation Gratitude.

    When: Nov. 4 & 5, 2019 from 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

    Sammamish Plateau Dentistry
    22725 S.E. 29th St. Sammamish, WA 98075
    Kids ages 14 & under (and accompanied by an adult) can cash in their treats for $1/pound (up to $5/child) and also receive a spooky goodie bag with their cash. Dr. Chan is encouraging kids to draw a picture or write a letter to a soldier to be included in the care packages.

    When: Nov. 2 & Nov. 6, 2019 from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

    Mercer Island Pediatric Dentistry
    7800 S.E. 27th St., Suite 101 Mercer Island WA 98040
    Kids can bring in their wrapped, unwanted candy And receive $1 per pound (up to a maximum of $10 per kid). All candy collected will be donated to US troops/veterans and their families throughout the holiday season.

    When: Nov. 5, 2019 from 8 a.m.- 5 p.m.

    North of Seattle
    Richard Chan Orthodontics (three locations listed below)
    Dr. Chan will be purchasing your unopened Halloween candy at $1 per pound (10-pound max per child) and sending it to our local food banks. Receive an extra dollar for coming in costume. All kids need to be accompanied by an adult.

    When: Nov. 1 from 2 p.m.–5 p.m. at the Mill Creek office; Nov. 5 from 2 p.m.-4:30 p.m. at the Monroe office; Nov. 6, 2019 from 2 p.m.-5 p.m. at the Bothell office.

    Richard Chan Orthodontics
    3414 132nd St. S.E., #301 Mill Creek, WA 98012 19020
    Bothell Way N.E., Suite A Bothell, WA 98011
    622 W. Main St. Monroe, WA 98272

    Soundview Family Dental
    201 5th Ave S., #103 Edmonds, WA 98020
    All kids are welcome with a parent or guardian. Drop by during regular office hours from 7 a.m.-3 p.m and Soundview will buy your candy for $1/pound; up to $5 max.

    When: Nov. 4-6, 2019 from 7 a.m.-3 p.m.

    ND Orthodontics
    16708 Bothell Everett Hwy., Ste. 102 Mill Creek, WA 98012
    ND Orthodontics in Mill Creek will be buying back your Halloween candy at $1 per pound and donating it to our troops overseas. Dr. Darvish will also match the amount brought in and donate the dollar amount to your school's PTA.

    When: Nov. 1, 2019 from noon-5 p.m.

    South of Seattle
    Molen Orthodontics (three locations below)
    Molen Orthodontics will be buying your leftover Halloween treats at a whopping $2 per pound (up to 10 pounds per child). Kids can also earn an extra $1 for bringing in two or canned food items and another $1 for wearing their Halloween costumes. All candy and canned food items will be donated to local charitable organizations, military personnel overseas, local churches, outreach groups, and food banks for use over the upcoming holidays.

    When: Nov. 1, 2019 from 2:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. at their three locations:
    Auburn, Sumner and Enumclaw 1110 Harvey Rd. Auburn, WA 98002
    1771 Farrelly St. Enumclaw, WA 98022
    16209 64th St. E Sumner, WA 98390

    Kids on 1st Dentistry
    33915 1st Way S., Suite 100 Federal Way, WA 98003
    Open to kids of all ages accompanied by an adult. Cash in your unwrapped treats for $1/pound (no weight restrictions) and help support Operation Gratitude and its efforts to send treats to our troops overseas. Dr. Becker is encouraging everyone to bring in letters and pictures to send with the care packages.

    When: Nov. 7, 2019 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

    Operation Shoebox
    If you don’t have time to stop by one of these locations, or would rather put together your own care package, mail your candy to Operation Shoebox. Every year, Operation Shoebox sends tons of candy to our troops and they would be more than happy to take your leftovers this year.
    Operation Shoebox
    8360 E. Highway 25 Belleview, FL 34420

     

  • Candy Pick-up Program

    If you’re a member of Ridwell, they also take candy individually-wrapped and free of Halloween markings and donate it to make an unsheltered kid’s birthday special.
  • Wrapper Recycling
    Unfortunately, most wrappers are garbage and can’t be recycled in City bins. However, paper-wrapped (ex. chocolate bars) or boxed (ex. Junior Mints, dots, Nerds, raisins) can be recycled.



    Terracycle has a Candy and Snack Wrappers Zero Waste Box™ but I’m unsure of which schools or stores are participating in this program. If you’ve seen one in your neighborhood, please leave a comment!

    

Lastly, I’ve seen some pretty creative upcycled candy wrapper DIYs! My favorite DIYs are definitely the tooth fairy box that uses Altoid tins and these pouches made for school supplies.

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