Umm…Happy Halloween

And now, for the most depressing link roundup I could possibly manage:

What’s scarier than Halloween? Blood Chocolate. –an account of trafficking, child labor, and corporate pressure to keep beans cheap.

Broken Hearts: A Review of Industry Efforts to Eliminate Child Labor in the Cocoa Industry –showing how despite efforts, the real power to end the abuses lies in the hands of the chocolate companies, (like Hershey’s), who appear to be mostly concerned with profit.

And if we needed another reason: oh goody. Cancer, Hyperactivity, and Allergies may lurk in Trick-or-Treat bags. (Hint: it’s the synthetic food dyes.)

Then there’s less depressing stuff that nonetheless makes me sigh, because I know the kids around here wouldn’t fall for it: Replacing Candy with Sugar-Free Eco-Friendly Treats. (Know what I would have done if I’d planned ahead more? Gotten on ebay and bought a buttload of those ridiculous “silly band” things in bulk, and given those out. At least they are popular, and while they are ridiculous, they at least don’t use up THAT many resources…)

At least for costumes this year we were able to go second-hand and homemade…Harry Potter and (we think–Halloween isn’t for another two days) Tinkerbelle. (Or Belle.  Or Little Black Cat. She keeps changing her mind.  Fortunately, we can manage any of the three with thrift-store finds and fifteen minutes at the sewing machine.

At last, one final eco-tip, courtesy of my son:

“Pillowcases hold WAY more candy than plastic pumpkins!”

(And are more eco-friendly, but I’m not sure that’s his motivation…)

Happy Halloween! Be safe, be as green as you can, be healthy, and most of all have fun.


Posted on October 29, 2010, in rants, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. After reading your post, and the linked document on food dyes, my son and I went through the pantry and fridge. Fortunately, we eat pretty much whole foods and not a ton of processed stuff, so we didn’t find too much, but were sad to find that Ovaltine (which my kids drink a TON of) has a couple of questionable food dyes (Yellow 6, Red 40 and Blue 1). Now we’ll try to find a safer alternative.

    Thanks so much for posting!

  2. I know, scary, isn’t it! It’s like you just can’t get away from it…

    I make my own hot cocoa mix…I wonder if it would be possible to make something ovaltine-like from scratch…it’s that rare thing for which a google search does NOT yield dozens of practical ideas…

    Hmm…I may be on a mission now. 🙂

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