Trick and treat: don’t waste your Halloween pumpkin!

What's scarier than witches and ghosts at Halloween? What about 15 million pumpkins that are thrown away every Halloween? It would be enough to make a bowl of pumpkin soup for everyone in Britain, according to environmental waste charity Hubbub, which organises the #PumpkinRescue campaign, now in its 5th year. Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and its recycling and waste contractor Veolia is also encouraging residents to reduce their waste this Halloween.

When you carve a grinning face on your pumpkin please make sure to use the flesh to cook a spicy pumpkin soup or faBOOlous Halloween cupcakes. For delicious recipes to make use of those pumpkin carving visit www.lovefoodhatewaste.com Once your carved pumpkins have done a good amount of scaring banish them to your blue food waste bin to turn them into renewable energy and fertiliser.

Your pumpkin is not the only waste that can be transformed into a valuable resource this Halloween.

Why not make a ghoulish costume that won’t spook the planet using old clothes?  It’s a great alternative to buying a costume in store. And don’t forget, if you can’t reuse your costumes next year, they can also be recycled at the kerbside by putting them in your clear textile recycling bags. But remember, those wigs and plastic masks are too scary for our teams to collect as they aren’t the right material.  Try donating them to your local charity shop for someone else to use next year.

It’s easy for waste to quickly mount up from the masses of packaging used for sweet wrappers and decorations that are thrown away once those spells have been cast.  But rather than put them in those creepy black bins, why not put them to good use in your pink sacks? Remember to remove any sticky tape ribbons, string or pins first.

Cllr Mark Flewitt, cabinet member for public protection, said: “This time of year we see hundreds of creepy costumes and devilish decorations masking our streets in Halloween-themed style. With all this mischievous fun comes lots of potential waste, through carved pumpkins, fancy dress costumes and even sweet wrappers. Please remember to dispose of all your rubbish, costumes and pumpkins appropriately to help prevent any perilous pollution.”

Keith McGurk, Regional Director for Veolia said: ‘Residents are doing a great job of recycling their waste and we want to thank them for it. Halloween is one of the biggest commercial celebrations in the UK and we produce a lot of waste as a result. By taking a few minutes to put the right thing in the right bin, bag or box, it means that there is less waste sent to landfill which is great news for the environment. Recycling needn’t be scary.’