Happy Halloween! If you’re like most Americans, you have a stockpile of candy ready for the trick or treaters who’ll be knocking on your door tonight. But whether you have kids of your own or you’re just passing out the goodies, the prospect of extra candy lying around the house can be daunting. In addition to potentially sabotaging your own diet, most parents don't want their kids feasting on sugary empty calories for weeks on end. But what’s the alternative - taking the excess candy and throwing it away? It's wasteful, and you have to play the Bad Guy.
Fear not! There's an alternative solution that not only rids your house of excess candy, it puts extra cash in your pocket: the Halloween Candy Buyback program.
The program works in conjunction with local dentist offices; participating dentists will buy back your Halloween candy, usually for about $1 a pound (some may even throw in a free toothbrush). After the candy is collected, the dentists then ship it off to Operation Gratitude, a non-profit group that sends care packages to U.S. troops overseas. Last year, Operation Gratitude received and shipped 125 tons of Halloween candy, which was dispersed over 60,000 care packages.
Not only does the program rid your house of excess sugary treats, it provides a great opportunity to teach your kids a valuable lesson about money and choices. Show your kids the website, and present them with two scenarios: trade in their candy and earn enough money to buy a new toy, or keep the candy and forgo the toy.
Regardless of the choice your child makes, less sugar + more cash = big win for most parents.
To find a dentist office participating near you, visit www.halloweencandybuyback.com and enter your zip code. If your favorite dentist isn’t participating, you can send them the link and encourage them to take part next year.
For more info on teaching your children about money, check out Financial Lessons for Kids.