Tricks to Beat the Plastic-Wrapped Treats October 24, 2020 Email Scientists agree that single-use plastic is a big problem for our planet. Straws, takeout containers and plastic grocery bags are banned or in the process of being banned in many cities and states across the country. Unfortunately, single-use plastics seem to be built into many of our holiday traditions. Here are some simple tips to help you ditch the single-use plastic candy wrappers this Halloween. Halloween Candy Americans bought 600 million pounds of Halloween candy in 2019, and of the top ten most loved brands, eight are wrapped in plastic. For a holiday that encompasses just a single night, that’s a whole lot of single-use plastic. Unfortunately, it’s nearly impossible to recycle plastic wrappers. They’re too small to be sorted effectively by machines or by humans working on a fast moving sorting line. So wrappers must be thrown in the garbage where they will end up in a landfill. If you love candy, but hate the waste check out these sweet tips: Buy from the Bulk Bins Many stores and candy shops offer bulk candy which can be put directly into a container or jar. Even if candy is individually plastic-wrapped, buying from the bulk bin eliminates the need for a big plastic package. No-Wrapper Candy (e.g. candy corn, gummy bears and chocolate covered raisins) Some candies can be purchased from the bulk bins with no wrapper, which is the most environmentally-friendly option. No-wrapper candies are perfect for candy bowls at home and other places where germs are less of a concern. Foil-Wrapped Candy (e.g. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Hershey’s Kisses and gold coins) While single wrappers are generally too small to recycle, foil is less toxic than plastic. You also can consolidate them into larger “balls of foil” that can go in the recycling cart. Paper- and WaxPaper-Wrapped Candy (e.g. Pixy Stix and Bits-O-Honey) Like foil-wrapped candy, these items are too small to be recycled but generally less toxic than plastic, and uncoated paper wrappers can go in the compost cart. Paper-Boxed Candies (e.g. Nerds, Dots, Milk Duds, chocolate-covered raisins and Junior Mints) Unlike plastic wrappers, paper boxes can typically be composted or recycled. Uncoated paper candy wrappers/boxes can go in the compost. You can also recycle clean paper candy boxes. No matter how you celebrate this Halloween, do your part to minimize single-use plastic and reduce your impact on the planet.