Do most kids actually eat all the Halloween candy they get?

I know it’s not just us because I’ve seen some cartoons in the comics poking fun at children and Halloween candy, but holy cow, it appears that people are getting more and more generous each year with their handouts. Last year our kids went around the block and got about half a plastic pumpkin worth of candy. This year, for more or less the same amount of territory, they were full to the brim, an easy 60+ pieces per child.
They ate some, but call me Scrooge if you must, I didn’t want to deal with weeks of sneaking candy and the behavioral response that inevitably occurs (can you say “wigged out?”) so we invited our Halloween Candy Fairy to trade most of the candy for something more cool and healthier (see our earlier article the candy fairy visits on Halloween night).

Now, rumor has it, the Candy Fairy has a brown grocery sack about half-full of candy that needs to vanish from the household. This is in addition to the twenty-one pieces that they so carefully culled from their massive piles, candy that included full-size candy bars and a wide variety of pretty yummy stuff.
What gets me, though, is the idea that this excess of, say, 100 pieces of candy was repeated in every house on our block, every block in our town and throughout the United States. Millions upon millions upon millions of “fun size” candy that’s going to be wasted, tossed in the landfill or just snarfed up by children and adults alike.
I don’t have a solution, and frankly it’s fun to see the kids dress up and get into the spirit of being someone else, of masquerading, and having fun, and heck, I got to dress up as a jester and be in a live-action production at our school called the Halloween Journey, so that part’s definitely good fun.
But the waste, the tons of candy that most likely is destined for the landfill, it’s staggering.
Buuuutttt…. then again, maybe we’re the only ones that expect our kids to cull the best ten or twenty pieces of candy from their haul and discard the rest. How do you deal with the excess of candy your children collected this year, if at all?
And what did the candy fairy bring my children this year? Tokens to get a bucket of golf balls at the local driving range, where they love to whack the balls and are actually getting pretty darn good, actually!

8 comments on “Do most kids actually eat all the Halloween candy they get?

  1. We have the Halloween Witch.. cousin of the Tooth Fairy.. she picks up the extra they “cull” from the hoard .. and leaves a toy in return.. IF there isn’t enough in the offering to her she’ll take the offering plus some of their kept candy and NOT leave a toy..
    As for the extra.. my wife takes it to work (I’m a stay at home Dad).. what happens to it there?? I’m sure my wife eats it.. but she could put it in the break room.. perhaps you know a break room somewhere that wants it?? PLEASE don’t put it in the trash!!.. heck.. grind it up and put it in your worm bin and let them compost it.. you do have a worm bin.. right?

  2. We had our daughter pick 14 pieces for snacks for after dinner for 2 weeks. And she actually hasn’t remembered to ask for candy after dinner once! Unfortunately Mom and Dad are making short work of the leftover candy. I heard a suggestion to chop up the chocolate and freeze it, along with the M&Ms, for holiday baking. That’s what I should’ve done!

  3. My kids donated theres to the soliders overseas might be a good thought I got the kids involved and they decided not to keep any. so we turned it in and then Dad took them out to a nice dinner afterwords(not fast food)

  4. My son, at 3 years of age just had his first trick or treating experience, and brought back close to 2 pounds of assorted sweets, our solution to this largess is to ‘spread the love’, we bring some to share with friends’ and relations’ children on weekend visits , and keep our son’s favorites as the occassional after dinner treat. Of course we’ll have to find another solution when my youngest son is old enough to bring back a halloween bag of his own…

  5. Don’t throw it away, that’s just wasteful! It’s not like the vast majority of candy spoils, just pace it out (maybe one piece a day?), and don’t buy any more til it’s gone.

  6. I freeze all the chocolate and it lasts for months. The other stuff stays out and I stop buying anything for snacks. Once in awhile, I’ll go through the bowl and pitch the yucky stuff that no one will miss. (I can’t believe that those eyeballs and body parts are real candy. 🙂 Eventually when I get tired of the bowl in my way, I dump the whole kit and kaboodle. As for the sugar effect, I’ve never noticed that sugar makes my kids hyper at all.
    I do agree that people hand out WAY too much candy. Including me. I tried to hand out one piece at a time this year, but when I realized that I’d have too much left over I began handing out by the handfuls.

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