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Saturday, October 9, 2010

VEGNEWS** The Official Guide to Vegan Halloween Candy

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The Official Guide to Vegan Halloween Candy

Mining through gobs of candy every October can be mind-boggling, but VN's definitive guide to vegan treats will make this your best Halloween yet.

If ever there is a time for an out-of-control sugar rush, Halloween night is it. Before pulling treats from the depths of a candy-filled pillowcase or grabbing fistfuls from a skeleton-shaped party bowl, consult VN's comprehensive list of vegan-friendly candy to ensure that all holiday snacking is animal by-product free.

· Airheads Taffy (website)

· Azure Chocolat Beauty Bark (website)

· BoomChocoBoom! Ricemilk Bar (website)

· Brachs Fruit Slices (website)

· Charms Blow Pops (website)

· Charms Pumpkin Pops (website)

· Chick-o-Sticks (website)

· Chuao Chocolatier Spicy Maya (website)

· Clif Kid Organic Twisted Fruit (website)

· Crows (website)

· Cracker Jack (website)

· Cry Baby Candy (website)

· Dots (website)

· Dum-Dums (website)

· Endangered Species dark chocolate (website)

· Endangered Species Bug Bites Halloween Treats (website)

· Go Max Go candy bars (website)

· Hubba Bubba bubblegum (website)

· Lets Do This Organic Gummy Bears (website)

· Mary Janes, regular and peanut butter kisses (website)

· Jolly Ranchers hard candy (website)

· Now and Later (website)

· NuGo Organic Chocolate Bar (website)

· Peanut Chews, Original Dark (website)

· Pez (website)

· Pure Fun Organic Halloween Pops (website)

· Saf-T-Pops (website)

· Sjaak's Organic Chocolates (website)

· Sour Patch Kids (website)

· Starburst Original Jelly Beans (website)

· Super Bubble (website)

· Swedish Fish (website)

· Tree Huggin' Treats Crispy Cat candy bars (website)

· Tropical Source chocolate bars (website)

· Twizzlers (website)

· VerMints (website)

· YummyEarth lollipops (website)

Click here for the Ultimate Pumpkin Carving How-To with Dan Piraro!

Click here for the lowdown on Eco-Conscious Halloween Costumes

Keeping a Green and Vegan Halloween Ideas by Chef Mayra.

Host your own Green Halloween Party or Neighborhood Bash

What’s even better than chocolate?

Free chocolate.

What’s even better than free chocolate?

Free, Fair Trade chocolate.

What’s even better than free, Fair Trade chocolate?

Free, Fair Trade chocolate for the good of others.

Green Halloween shopping tips

Whether buying food, treats, treasures or prizes for your Green Halloween party, thinking green is just as much about what you don’t buy as what you do buy. Reducing the amount of waste we generate by cutting down on excessive shopping is not only better for our planet (and easier on our wallets) but reducing the number of products we purchase also teaches our children the art of simplicity as well the value of moderation.

When purchasing items for your Green Halloween, it may help to consider whether the items you’re buying are of quality and can therefore be enjoyed past November 1st. If not, can the items be reused or recycled? In addition, look for products that meet one or more of the following green criteria:

*Kid Healthy

  • Organic or pesticide-free
  • Food items are made from healthy and whole ingredients and do not include hydrogenated oils, trans-fats, artificial colors or flavors. The items have limited or no salt, sugar or caffeine (including chocolate)
  • Non-food items are made from safe materials and do not pose any suspected immediate or long-term health risks

*Planet Healthy

  • Made with Earth-friendly practices, such as by organic farming
  • Preference given to locally grown or made goods (which alleviates environmental impact from shipping.) Get to know your local farmers and shop with them as often as possible.
  • Non-food items are made from Earth friendly materials such as sustainably harvested wood or recycled plastic
  • The item contains as little packaging as possible

*People Friendly

  • The people making the items earn fair wages and work in safe conditions (ideally, imported goods are certified Fair Trade)

It can be difficult to find products that meet all three criteria, so we suggest that parents try to consider one or more factors when shopping for Halloween. We also believe that when consumers continue to request that these items are readily available and affordable, businesses will step up to meet the rising demand.

Green shopping tips: Every little thing counts when it comes to making green choices.

  • Always bring your own cloth or recycled plastic bags with you when shopping for food, gifts, treats or treasures.
  • If you generally drive to do errands, try to get your shopping done all at once, rather than taking many short outings. You’ll save on gas and money while reducing your contribution to pollution and global warming.
  • Of course, if you can walk, ride your bike, carpool, or take public transportation, you’ll leave an even smaller eco-footprint behind.
  • Most importantly, if you can go without – do! Nothing could be greener than focusing on people rather than things.


Bring a little green to your Halloween party right from the start by avoiding paper invitations as well as the cost of postage by using free online sources such as or You can also make your own digital invitation. If you would like to send an invitation through the mail, make your own from recycled cards and magazines or use tree-free paper products such as hemp


Green Halloween food can be fun to prepare as well as to eat. When purchasing food for your Halloween party, look for foods that are organic, whole and, if possible, local. Going meatless also reduces environmental impact on the planet. Be sure to compost or recycle your food scraps, including your leftover pumpkins (which can be cooked and eaten if they are not left out on your porch for too long). When deciding on your menu, think seasonal and color! Finding foods that are in season and that naturally come in shades of black, orange and green is a fun activity that kids will enjoy.

Black: olives, black beans, poppy seeds, raisins/currants
Orange: bell peppers, oranges, carrots, squash, sweet potato/yams, tomato
Green: green apples, herbs, bell peppers, leafy greens, broccoli, kiwi, celery, avocado, peas/beans
Seasonal: pumpkins, acorn squash, butternut squash, sweet potato, cabbage, apples, pears

More ideas:

  • Toasted pumpkin seeds
  • Veggie dogs
  • Shredded carrot salad (shaped like a pumpkin with raisin eyes)
  • Baked apples with dates/ raisins, walnuts and cranberries
  • Stuffed orange bell peppers
  • Orange bell pepper and black olive pizza
  • Air popped pop corn
  • Pretzels shaped into pumpkins or cats
  • Cider made with 100% organic apple juice, simmered with cinnamon sticks
  • Seltzer water with 100% organic fruit juice (sparkling drink)

Please note that some children are very allergic to ingredients such as nuts and coconut. Whenever you’re hosting a party it’s always wise to ask your guests if their children have any allergies. If so, it’s a good idea to put a clearly written sign next to the food that contains the allergens or, even safer, avoid the ingredients altogether. Parents of children with allergies will be grateful for your thoughtfulness and their kids will feel safer and happier as well.

Green Halloween Food Tip: In some areas, food scraps and food-soiled paper can be recycled! Just toss them in your yard-waste bin with your lawn clippings and dead leaves and voila! Your scraps become compost, which later becomes food for plants, trees and shrubs. If you’re throwing candy away, be sure to remove the wrappers first.

Activities, games and crafts

If you’re hosting a Halloween party, focusing on fun, rather than stuff is a great way to keep things green. Laughter and good memories are gifts from the heart that don’t cost a dime or carbon footprints.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of Halloween
game ideas online. Below are a few ideas for Green Halloween activities a small number of kids or the whole neighborhood will enjoy. Of course, depending on the ages of the children involved, take care to make the games safe.

Of course if you come up with Halloween activities that are especially fun,
let us know and we can add them to this list.

  • Dunk for apples or try to bite apples hanging from strings.
  • Make recycled paper hats. Go online for patterns, add decorations as wanted.
  • Put on a Halloween themed puppet show
    The kids can do the entire thing themselves including making the puppets and creating the story or you can read a book as they act out the story.
  • Make a mural.
    Use a long sheet of tree-free or recycled paper and tape it to the floor or wall. Give kids some crayons and ask them all to draw some Halloween scenes. Then ask them about what they’ve drawn. Older kids enjoy this too. They can vote on the scene they like best and the winner can be given a prize. Check here
    for healthy art supplies.
  • Build A Scarecrow
    Form groups and have a variety of old clothes, pillowcases for heads, markers and recycled newspaper. Groups have 20 minutes to create. Give prizes to the scariest or funniest, then place outside.
  • Guess The Ghost - Great for Young Children
    Have one child leave the room. Then take a large sheet and have a different (child) stand and hide under the sheet. Mix up the remaining children in the room and then allow the child who left the room to come back inside. That child has to guess who's the ghost, by process of elimination they need to figure out which child is hiding under the sheet. Then that "Ghost" goes out of the room and a different child becomes the new ghost, mix up the remaining children and repeat until all of the children have had a turn being the ghost.

Our favorite: Conjure community fun. Instead of trick-or-treating, how about organizing a progressive party with 3 or more of your neighbors? With the kids already in costume, start at one house, where the kids will do one activity and eat one course of food and then walk with the whole gang to the next house, where everyone will enjoy the next activity. (For younger kids, limit the number homes to no more than three.) Be sure to let your kids ring the door-bell at each house and shout “Trick-or-Treat!”, “Trick-or-treasure!” or “Happy Halloween/Hallo green!” If you’d like, give each child a Green Halloween treat or treasure and then invite them in for the next activity and course of food. Here is a sample of what you can do:

  • House #1
    • Activity: Decorate trick-or-treat/ trick-or-treasure bags.
    • Food: Ants on a Log (celery sticks filled with nut butter and topped with raisins. use pumpkin butter for a Halloween twist!)

  • House #2
    • Activity: Witch’s Limbo (put on some fun music and let the kids play limbo with a broom).
    • Food: Spooky Spaghetti (look for 100% organic whole wheat or rice noodles with organic sauce)
  • House #3
    • Activity: Make masks out of recycled paper bags. Have lots of glitter, feathers and other objects to add. After everyone is done, stage a Halloween parade.
    • Food: Date Fingers (chopped organic dates rolled in coconut)
  • House #4
    • Activity: Play “Pass The Pumpkin”. Have kids sit in a circle and pass small pumpkins or gourds when upbeat music is playing from live instruments or a CD. When the music stops the child without a pumpkin is out. Continue until there's one child left. That child may take that pumpkin home. You may want to later give every child a small pumpkin to take home too.
    • Food: Warm apple cider (simmered with cinnamon sticks. At this time of year you may be able to find fresh-pressed cider from your local farmer.)

After leaving each home, it’s always nice to model gratitude. Simple gestures such as saying “thank you” make kids and adults feel good all year long.

Another great idea. Give a party for those in need. Helping our children understand how fortunate they are and how others may not have quite so much can be a feature of every celebration. Halloween is the perfect opportunity for you, your neighbors and the children, to host a Halloween party for those who are less fortunate. A senior center or retirement community might welcome a bunch of little goblins dressed up and celebrating with them.

Children can lead games and crafts, modified to work for the elderly. Sometimes, just a visit from a little ghost or goblin can make a homebound person’s day.

And there are other groups that might enjoy having someone else plan for them. If there is a homeless shelter for families or moms and kids, see if you can plan a party for them. Children with disabilities and kids in foster care are two other groups that might welcome any Halloween magic you can cook up.

Party favors and prizes

These items are likely too pricey to give out to every little goblin who comes to your door. But if you’ll be giving away prizes or gifts and want to keep the green in your Halloween party, these items will do the trick.

Green Halloween prizes and gifts need not be purchased. Handmade treats and treasures, especially those made out of recycled and natural materials can be easy, fun and inexpensive – not to mention, thoughtful. Books such as
The Children’s Yearand Earthways have tons of great ideas for unique, easy-to-make, seasonal gifts.

ATTENTION PARENTS: Just like traditional holiday treats, many items may be unsafe for children under the age of three. We strongly suggest that parents inspect all treats and treasures before allowing children to play with any items.

Treats and treasures for LOTS of kids

If you are expecting to hand out treats and treasures to several hundred or more kids and are looking for affordable items that are also healthy and green, you’ve come to the right place.

Weisenbach Specialty Printing, has tons of Earth-friendly items that are perfect Green Halloween treats and treasures and most can be custom printed with your logo or a Halloween message of your choice. They also sell many items that are pre-printed, usually in soy ink, and ready to be handed out.

Here are our favorites:

  • Pencils: from recycled plastic, recycled denim or recycled money
  • Tattoos: custom or recycle-themed
  • Coloring books: Earth-friendly themes
  • Guide wheels: fun, educational tools
  • Shoe laces: custom printed and recycled
  • Soy crayons in 3 or 4 pack: customized box
  • Stickers: recycling theme
  • Whistles: recycled plastic, custom printed
  • Spinning tops: recycled plastic, custom printed
  • Buttons: recycled material with soy ink, custom
  • Magnets: recycled, custom
  • Seed paper/bookmarks for planting or reading
  • Bookmarks with recycling themes
  • Door hangers: recycled, custom door
  • Hand fans (save our pad)
  • Organic cotton tote bags: printable (for treat/treasure bags)
  • Soy candles: custom
  • Organic cotton t-shirts: custom

Ask for items made in America.

Your Halloween message

Need ideas for what message to print on your treats and treasures? Here are a few suggestions:

  • Happy Hallogreen!®
  • Think outside the candy box®
  • Go Green & Animal free on Halloween
  • Putting the GREEN in Halloween
  • Turning Halloween Green
  • Healthy compassionate + Fun = Happy Everyone
  • It’s Halloween, just greener
  • Trick-or-treating green & Vegan style
  • Treating kids to healthy kinder fun
  • I ♥ Animals& Earth


Having a Green Halloween does not mean your party has be decoration-free. Gourds, pumpkins, apples and other items from nature look great as accents on front porches and table tops while also reducing the use of paper and plastics. Decorations such as fair trade skeleton streamers and colorful recycled and recyclable dinnerware may add a touch of festivity. If you’d like to use candles for a little ambiance, be sure to keep them out of the reach of kids and only use those made of soy or instead of petroleum.

Regardless of how you decorate for Halloween, being green and compassionate also means eliminating as much waste as you can, so if you are going to purchase items that will end up in the trash, try to find items that can later be reused or recycled, or composted.

1/2 large OR 1 whole small avocado
1 ripe banana
1 rounded tablespoon favorite nut butter

optional ( Cashews On top )

Scoop out avocado pulp. Combine with nut butter and banana.
Process in a blender to a smooth pudding consistency adding a little water for consistency if required.

1/2 cup pureed pears
1/2 cup pureed carrots
1TB cashew butter
(add a little olive oil to emulsify if needed)
blend well
( organic carrots are very sweet so you may need to add sweetener if yours are more bitter)

4 tablespoons coconut oil
1 cup dark agave
4 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup nut butter

In a saucepan, bring butter, honey, vanilla, salt to the simmer stage and cook for 15 minutes. Add peanut butter and stir and simmer five minutes.

Pour into a buttered loaf pan and freeze until just till hard enough to slice with a buttered spatula. Cut them in small squares,wrap in pieces of waxed paper cut to size. Store them in the fridge.
Tip: Use Pyrex loaf pan

Do you ever wonder what is Crayons MADE from?

Crayons got their name from Edwin Binney's wife, Alice. She combined the words craie (French for chalk) with the first part of the word oleaginous (the oily paraffin wax) to make the word "crayola."

The two basic ingredients for a crayon are:

· Pigment

· Paraffin wax, stored in heated 17,000 gallon tanks

The mixture is heated until it melts into a liquid. Crayons melt at 105 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius). The mixture is heated to 190 F (82 C). The liquid is poured into a preheated mold full of hundreds of crayon-shaped holes. Cool water (55 F, 13 C) is used to cool the mold, allowing the crayon to be made in 3 to 9 minutes. A single mold makes 1,200 crayons at a time, weighing a total of about 40 pounds. The operator uses hydraulic pressure to eject the crayons from the mold. Earlier mold designs used a hand crank to push up the crayons. The just-molded crayons are then manually quality checked for imperfections and inspected for broken tips. The excess wax from the mold and any rejected crayons are recycled to be re-melted. More than 120 crayon colors are possible.

Binney & Smith also uses injection molding that allows them to make 2.4 to 6.4 million crayons in a day.


Hand Crafted, Multi-Color and Solid Color Crayons made from unwanted crayons collected by the National CRAYON RECYCLE PROGRAM (as of October, 2009, we've collected over 46,000 pounds of unwanted crayons from schools, restaurants and many caring organizations across the USA). "Saving the Earth, one crayon at a time" ~ Crazy Crayons, Eco Stars and Earthling Crayons are made with crayons that DIDN'T END UP IN THE LANDFILLS!! The Crayon Recycle Program is a perfect "educational tool" for Elementary School teachers and community service project educators to use to teach kids about the 3 R's (Reduce ~ Reuse ~ Recycle). It's very easy to participate, check out the "Recycle Program" Page.

Each Crazy Crayon is a Hand-Made Work of Art - No Two Are Alike!
100’s of Shapes and Themes.
Earth Conscious Packaging.
Only Certified Non-Toxic Crayons Are Recycled.
CRAZY CRAYONS come in 26 Different Colors.
All purchases support the CRAYON RECYCLE PROGRAM

Vegetarian moms, vegan moms, and just plain healthy moms are worried about Halloween and the amount of candy our kids will likely consume.

Sure, sugar overload is a concern, but did you also know that many kinds of candy contains gelatin and other animal products? Even chocolate contains stearic acid, which is a fatty substance made from animal stomachs. That's bad news for moms who worry about what they are putting into their little one's tummies.

What is Steatic acid?

Food sources

It occurs in many animal and vegetable fats and oils. One important source is cocoa production

Stearic acid is prepared by treating animal fat with water at a high pressure and temperature, leading to the hydrolysis of triglycerides. It can also be obtained from the hydrogenation of some unsaturated vegetable oils. Common stearic acid is actually a mix of stearic acid and palmitic acid, although purified stearic acid is available separately.


Stearic acid is useful as an ingredient in making candles, plastics, dietary supplements, oil pastels and cosmetics, and for softening rubber. It is used to harden soaps, particularly those made with vegetable oil.

Stearic acid is also used as a parting compound when making plaster castings from a plaster piece mold or waste mold and when making the mold from a shellacked clay original. In this use, powdered stearic acid is dissolved in water and the solution is brushed onto the surface to be parted after casting. This reacts with the calcium in the plaster to form a thin layer of calcium stearate which functions as a release agent.

Esters of stearic acid with ethylene glycol, glycol stearate and glycol distearate, are used to produce a pearly effect in shampoos, soaps, and other cosmetic products. They are added to the product in molten form and allowed to crystalize under controlled conditions.

In fireworks, stearic acid is often used to coat metal powders such as aluminum and iron. This prevents oxidation, allowing compositions to be stored for a longer period of time..

It is used along with simple sugar or corn syrup as a hardener in candies.

It is used with zinc as zinc stearate as fanning powder for cards to deliver smooth fanning motion.

Stearic acid is one of most commonly used lubricants during injection molding and pressing of ceramic powders.

Vegan Candy List from PETA Kids

Airheads taffy
Atkins peanut butter bars
Blow Pops
Brach's Cinnamon Hard Candy
Charms lollipops
Cracker Jack
Cry Babies
Dem Bones
Goldenberg's Peanut Chews
Hubba Bubba bubblegum
Jolly Ranchers (lollipops and hard candy)
Mary Janes (regular and peanut butter kisses)
Now and Later
Ring Pop lollipops
Smarties (U.S. Brand)
Sour Patch Kids
Super Bubble
Swedish Fish
Sweet Tarts
Tropical Source mini chocolate bags

“Entertaining with Compassion this Holiday Season”


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