Making Halloween Fun for The Food Allergic: What to have on hand for your food allergic child

The previous post discussed what to dispense to trick-or-treaters who knock on your door. In short, Halloween presents a perfect opportunity for you to spread food allergy awareness to trick-or-treaters and any of their chaperones, so take advantage of it.  Stock up on safe (possibly nonfood) items for the food allergic, and when your doorbell rings, boast that you have safe choices available for the food allergic.

This post discusses what to have on hand for your food allergic child and the next will complete this trilogy, discussing how to make your child feel extra special on Halloween.

What to have on hand for your food allergic child
Unless your child is allergic to everything, you probably have more leeway in shopping for him than you do in shopping for food allergic trick-or-treaters.

That said, the middle of October is NOT an ideal time to test or shop for new candies and treats for your food allergic child to try, so I recommend you wait.  For now stick with small candy, toys, and treats that you already know your child enjoys.  We include chocolate items we’re convinced are safe for our daughter, as well as things like Silly Bandz, Smencils, mini tubs of Play-doh, which we know get our daughter excited.  If we had a boy, perhaps we’d stock trading cards of some kind.  

(When I was a child, the thing boys in my neighborhood collected most was beer cans.  For the life of me I cannot recall why.  I don’t recommend stocking up on beer cans.)

I’m not saying never to search for new candies that could be safe, just don’t do it now.  It’s nearly too late to do a proper exhaustive search for untried candies from specialty producers.  Specialty candy brands might not operate every day, and they might become overwhelmed with orders during October.  If you decide to search and order from them now anyway, but have a backup plan for candies and treats for your own child so you’re not left hanging.

Instead, wait until November to order from them, when the specialty allergy-safe candy will probably be discounted heavily anyway, and your child may sample them at his leisure.  Then, next September make sure you start ordering the favorites for Halloween that year.

Next post: How to make your child feel extra special on Halloween

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About Tom

Tom Anichini owns Egg-Free Epicurean along with his wife, Amy Jones Anichini, who founded the business in 2009. Tom is an actuary and an investment professional. He holds an MBA in Finance from the Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS in Actuarial Science from the University of Illinois. He is also a CFA charter holder and an Associate of the Society of Actuaries. He lives in San Diego with his wife and two daughters.
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