Food Allergy Research & Education’s Teal Pumpkin Project™ Sweeps the Nation This Halloween

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Schools, Museums, Zoos, Businesses and More Join International Awareness Campaign

The Teal Pumpkin Project™ is changing Halloween for the better.

The Teal Pumpkin Project™, an international movement launched by the nonprofit patient advocacy organization Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE), is changing Halloween for good. Designed to raise awareness of life-threatening food allergies during the Halloween season, the Teal Pumpkin Project™ has already reached millions of people across the U.S. and around the world with its message of creating a safer, happier Halloween for all.

Food allergy is a life-altering and potentially life-threatening disease affecting 15 million Americans, including 1 in 13 children. This year, supporters in all 50 states and 12 countries have pledged to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project™ and added their households to the project’s interactive map, showing support, empathy and respect for individuals with food allergy.

Launched nationally by FARE in 2014, the Teal Pumpkin Project™ promotes a safer, happier Halloween for all by encouraging individuals to paint a pumpkin teal – the color of food allergy awareness – and place it in front of their homes to indicate they will have non-food treats available on Halloween for trick-or-treaters with food allergies or others for whom candy may not be an option. Participating households may opt to print a free sign from FARE if they do not have a pumpkin.

“The Teal Pumpkin Project™ is changing Halloween for the better,” said Veronica LaFemina, vice president of communications at FARE. “Participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project™ enables supporters to make a tangible difference in the lives of children and families in their communities. By placing a teal pumpkin in front of your door this Halloween and offering non-food treats, you are extending the Halloween spirit of fun and community to all children and raising awareness about this growing public health issue.”    

Anyone can participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project™. Throughout the U.S. and around the world, families, municipalities, healthcare providers, pumpkin patches, hardware and grocery stores, family resorts and theme parks, other patient advocacy organizations and more are participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project™, incorporating non-food treats into their traditional Halloween activities. Elementary schools, college campuses and even celebrities have also shown their support.

Halloween can present a number of challenges for individuals and families managing food allergies because many popular candies include some of the most common allergens. In addition, different sizes of the same candy can use different ingredients, and smaller sizes of some candies that are popular during this time of year may not always have clear labels stating their ingredients.

Heather Krieger, a Pennsylvania resident whose 5-year old son has multiple food allergies, had a memorable Teal Pumpkin Project™ experience last year.

“It made my night when a little boy and his dad came to our house - the little boy grabbed a couple of stickers and was so excited! His dad explained the boy had food allergies and each year they end up donating all of his candy,” Krieger said. “The look on that little boy's face was something that I will never forget! While our family initially supported the project for our son, I realized quickly this was for all children with any dietary restriction for any reason.”

The Teal Pumpkin Project™ was inspired by a local awareness activity run by the Food Allergy Community of East Tennessee and has grown into an international movement.

For tips for managing food allergies during Halloween, please visit FARE’s blog.

For more information about the Teal Pumpkin Project™, ideas for non-food treats, free downloads such as official Teal Pumpkin Project™ signs, fliers and stickers, ideas for themed fundraisers and FARE’s online crowd-sourced map, visit For more information about food allergies, visit

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Nancy Gregory
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Food Allergy Research & Education
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