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Organic and Fair Trade Halloween Candy

Updated on October 11, 2015
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An environmental enthusiast and activist her entire adult life, Kathryn shares her secrets to reducing waste and living greener.

Do you shop Fair Trade and/or organic?

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These eco-friendly, organic and Fair Trade Halloween candies pass the "YUM!" test with my little ghosts and goblins

Every year, more and more of us ask our grocers and suppliers for Earth-friendly, organic Halloween candies and products. Just two years ago, I had a tough time finding Halloween treats I could give my grandchildren with a good conscience.

This year, organic and Fair Trade manufacturers offer quite a selection of eoc-friendly candies you can be proud to give to the ghosties and goblins knocking on your door, including the SurfSweet gummy bears and Endangered Species dark and milk chocolate delights you see in the photo above.

On this page you will find several more of the greener Halloween treats that pass the "yum" test with our grandchildren. If you know of a resource for organic, Fair Trade, or eco-packaged candies I've missed, please share it in the comments section.

Fair Trade means no child labor in this chocolate

Endangered Species Chimp Mints, Organic Dark Chocolate & Mint, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)
Endangered Species Chimp Mints, Organic Dark Chocolate & Mint, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)

Unlike much of the conventional chocolate sold today, no slave or child labor is used to produce these chocolates, so when you hand them out this Halloween, you know only adults planted, harvested and helped to manufacture this chocolate. More, they were treated and compensated fairly.

Like other Endangered Species products, part of the profits from each sale go to support endangered species around the world.

 

Why is organic important to so many of us today?

If you're wondering why so many people today spend more for organic, pesticide-free and GMO-free foods, here are three big reasons.

1. Organic food is more nutritious

Research shows that eating an all-organic diet could offer as many more nutrients as in 1-2 servings of fruits and vegetables
Research shows that eating an all-organic diet could offer as many more nutrients as in 1-2 servings of fruits and vegetables | Source

According to a peer-reviewed study published in The British Journal of Nutrition in July 2014, people who switch from a conventional diet to an organic diet get 20-40 percent more disease-fighting anti-oxidants and polyphenols.

The journal likens that increase to eating one or two more servings of fruits and vegetables every day. For a good capsulization of this study, see the Environmental Working Group (EWG) article, Is Organic Really Better?.

Whenever you can shop and buy local first!

Surf Sweets Organic Jelly Bean Snack Packs, 0.8-Ounce Packages (Pack of 24)
Surf Sweets Organic Jelly Bean Snack Packs, 0.8-Ounce Packages (Pack of 24)

I haven't tried the jelly bean snack yet, but if it's anything like their fruity bears, I'm in trouble! This package contains 24 child-size packets of juicy jelly beans, all safely sealed and just right for the Halloween candy bowl.

 

2. Organic agriculture is better for the environment

On About Money, environmental writer Jennifer Chait lists eight reasons organic farming is better for the environment. So we can dig deeper, she backs her assertions with links to supporting studies and data.

Some of the benefits she mentions include protecting our soil, air and water supply, contributing fewer carbon emissions, helping to slow global warming and supporting biodiversity and animal welfare.

3. Organic agriculture is better for the farm workers

The farm workers who plant, grow, tend and harvest our food crops are among the lowest paid, least protected people in western culture. Very often, they are required to apply known-carcinogenic pesticides and synthetic fertilizers without adequate training or protective gear.

Take a look at the exposure these farm workers experience routinely in this Pesticide Action Network article titled simply, Farmworkers.

That's one reason I buy Bug Bites Endangered Species candy bars. They're Fair Trade, and every purchase gives a little back to protecting the biodiversity of our planet.


What could be more Halloween than Chocolate Bug Bites?

Endangered Species Bug Bites, Natural Milk Chocolate, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)
Endangered Species Bug Bites, Natural Milk Chocolate, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)

Just like conventional bags of individually-wrapped candy, now you can get organic milk chocolate squares, each wrapped and sealed in its own little package. Two things make these candies even more fun for the eco-conscious Halloween-treat shopper.

First, to satisfy you and me, 10 percent of net profits help to support endangered species habitat.

Second, to entertain and educate the little ones all year long, but especially this ghostly season, each candy comes with a colorful collectable Bug-Bite card depicting a real-life creepie-crawly on one side and facts about the insect on the other side.

 

Perhaps because my family were farmers first

Were you taught to give thanks before a meal? We were. We gave thanks for the food, and also for the bounty of the land, the fresh air and water we enjoyed.

At every meal, our prayer ended asking for the well-being of the workers whose labor brought the food from seed to table.

Maybe that's because my parents grew up on farms and helped their families grow much of their food.

They knew how the farmers backs ached at the end of the day, how they massaged salve into their blistered and calloused hands.

Back then, almost all food grown was organic

My grandparents grew most of their food the old-fashioned way. Late fall, after the last of the crops were in, they seeded the soil with cow dung they'd stockpiled from their own cattle all year. In some plots and fields, they sowed quick-growing legumes, then plowed them under before the hard winter frost. Those cover crops put important nutrients back into the soil.

With healthy soil and good crop husbandry, my grandparents didn't need to apply heavy artificial fertilizers and herbicides every year.

For the grown-ups accompanying the tiny monsters on their rounds

Endangered Species Bug Bites, Organic Dark Chocolate, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)
Endangered Species Bug Bites, Organic Dark Chocolate, 0.35-Ounce Packages (Pack of 64)

At 70 percent dark chocolate, these bug bites may be more popular with the adult dark-chocolate-loving crowd. Like their milk chocolate cousins, each of these bug bites come with a colorful bug card to educate and perhaps, creep the little ones out--in a Halloween-spooky good way. There are a lot of crazy-looking insects out there!

 

No bio-hazard suits in organic farming!

Today's mega farms, with their mile-long stretches of mono-crops rely heavily on soil-killing chemicals to combat the ever-more-resistant weeds and crop-eating bugs. Some of those chemicals are so toxic that the workers have to wear bio-hazard suits when applying them.

That's why it's so important to me to see that my children and grandchildren have only organic treats and why I'm willing to spend a little more.

The farmers and their field hands bear the brunt of the pesticides and insecticides they administer to the crops. Organic farming uses far less toxic measures.


Fair Trade sugar packets and organic maple syrup in one of our favorite local restaurants
Fair Trade sugar packets and organic maple syrup in one of our favorite local restaurants | Source

Organic lollipops two dads made because, Kids!

When two dads couldn't find what they wanted

Two dads, who had babies at about the same time, realized one day that, while they were careful to feed their darlings organic milk, veggies, fruits and crackers, when it came to candy, they had few choices. Like any good dads, they hunted for a solution. Not finding any other, they decided to make their own great-tasting organic lollipops.

Then they made a video to show us all how they do it. Don't you love it when a company is so proud of their processes--and have nothing to hide--that they take you inside and show you? Refreshing!

In the video below, watch how YummyEarth makes the lollipops and how they derive those fabulous, food-based colors and flavors.

We're not through yet!

There are lots more organic candy options this Halloween than ever before.

Take these tidy little packages of sweet berry candy from Annie's for a tasty and somewhat healthier treat. Each package is packed with a full day's child-sized dose of Vitamin C.

My granddaughter's favorite flavor is strawberry, and she loves the cherry and raspberry flavors almost as much.

Looking for vegan candies?

Here's an old favorite--Tangy-sweet fruity twists.

Get them in a variety of flavors, including strawberry, mixed berry and grape flavors.

Made with apple juice, and certified organic, they are also gluten free, vegetarian, vegan and Kosher.

What matters more in your Halloween treats? Organic? Fair Trade grown and made? Eco-Packaging? Price?

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What is more important to you? - Organic, Fair Trade, or eco-packaging?

In hunting down organic and Fair Trade treats for the kids, I find that, in this day of plastic packing everywhere, I pretty much have to give up on the hope of finding any dolled up in eco-friendly, Earth-friendly packaging.

Still, it's an important consideration. Each year, I ask for it wherever I buy treats.

Price is another important consideration, especially for young families in our struggling economy.

What's most important to you? Take advantage of the opportunity to weigh in on the poll to the right.

After you've voted, be sure to tell us more about why you feel the way you do in the comments section that follows.

© 2012 Kathryn Grace

What do you think about these products? Have you tried them? Would you try them this Halloween? I'd like to hear your opinion.

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    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @SandyMertens, pretty cool!

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 2 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      How cool is that! Organic candy for Halloween.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @YourDivineSpark: They taste good, and people and planet are as important as sales, so I love them all three ways. Let me know how you like them, either way, won't you?

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @PaigSr: We like what we like, eh? Thanks for taking a look.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @ColettaTeske: Sweet. Thank you.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @SusanDeppner: Your'e welcome. Thank YOU!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Dressage Husband: Yes, Stephen, I understand. I haven't had any success finding safe single-package Halloween treats that are Fair Trade, organic and sugar-free, but if we keep asking for them, perhaps we will get them one day.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Lady Lorelei: Yes, I enjoyed it too. Well worth the wait on my slow laptop!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @SuperBusyMama: Great news! Thank you.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Merrci: Thank you. As a grandmother of four, I could not agree more.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Margaret Schindel: Thank you. Quite a surprise, that one.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Nancy Hardin: Warming the cockles of my heart, NancyCarol. Thank you.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Susan Zutautas: Thank you so much, and especially thank you for choosing them for Halloween.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @MelanieKaren: Thank you, Melanie. The Bug Bites are especially fun, and tasty too. So glad to find another fan.

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 2 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      yum!

    • MelanieKaren profile image

      Melanie Wilcox 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Hello and congratulations on receiving LotD :) We have been buying the Bug Bites for awhile now. My son and I like to collect the pictures that come with each Bug Bite. They are all on our fridge. :)

      Regarding the poll, all are important. Although, I'm willing to pay more because of the quality and Fair Trade issues.

      nice article Grace!

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I'll be handing these out this coming Halloween. Congrats on your well deserved LOTD!

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 2 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I have never tried them, but I like the reasons for buying them. Our children, our earth are the most important things, and I admire you for your ideas on both. Thank you for sharing these Halloween candies, I will look for them this year.

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 2 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Congratulations on LOTD! wonderful!

    • Margaret Schindel profile image

      Margaret Schindel 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      We don't have children, but I confess that I treat myself to a small square from an Endangered Species 88% Dark Chocolate (Panther) bar every night. Thanks for the wonderful suggestions for Halloween candy treats we can feel good about giving out to trick or treaters, and congratulations on your well deserved Lens of the Day honors!

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 2 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      Great lens for Lens of the Day! Congratulations Graceonline! It's such a good idea to have more healthy alternatives for kids and more eco friendly too.

    • VioletteRose LM profile image

      VioletteRose LM 2 years ago

      Sounds like great choices :)

    • SuperBusyMama profile image

      Amanda R 2 years ago

      Awesome! Thanks for writing this! I will be looking for these candies and treats for Halloween this year!

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 2 years ago from Canada

      That video is so cool. Fun to watch the candy actually being made.

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 2 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I love the fair trade eco-friendly and organic properties, but refined sugar is a no no. I like natural sweeteners like honey and coconut sugar or dates etc.

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 2 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Very good to know these alternatives actually exist. Thanks for the great info and congratulations on Lens of the Day!

    • profile image

      ColettaTeske 2 years ago

      Just stopping by one more time to say, "Awesome job on the LOTD!" Great job!

    • PaigSr profile image

      PaigSr 2 years ago from State of Confussion

      Actually thanks to the wife I have about a few of these. Not my cup of tea so to speak. But she still brings them home once in a while as a treat for herself.

    • YourDivineSpark profile image

      YourDivineSpark 2 years ago

      I really wanna try all the Endangered Species chocolates you posted. I like how a percentage of the profit is donated and how interesting facts are included with them.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @Sylvestermouse: They are. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 2 years ago from United States

      They all sound look wonderful treats!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @TheHonestWebGuru: You're welcome. Thanks for taking a look.

    • TheHonestWebGuru profile image

      TheHonestWebGuru 2 years ago

      I know what I'm giving my kids to dish out for this Halloween. Thanks for sharing!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @BarbaraCasey: That's how I feel, too. So much at stake. I think of the higher cost as a tithe and an investment in our children and their future.Thanks for the pin!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      @ColettaTeske: You're welcome! I like their chocolate too, although try as I might, I have not developed a taste for dark, dark chocolate. I'm still a milk-chocolate fan, although now I like it a lot darker than I used to. There's still hope my palate will go dark!

    • profile image

      ColettaTeske 2 years ago

      Thank you for the awesome list of organic and Fair Trade Halloween candies. My favorite is Endangered Species chocolate. And, the darker, the better.

    • profile image

      BarbaraCasey 2 years ago

      Pinned for future reference. This stuff's costly, but it's time to put my money where my mouth is.

    • TapIn2U profile image

      TapIn2U 2 years ago

      Yum! Love to try these. Sundae ;-)

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @GeorgeneMBramlage: Excellent organizations, Cercis. Thank you so much for sharing them. Others have mentioned Equal Exchange as well. Highly recommend!

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      Here are primarily the sources from which I buy. There is a group at our church that orders in bulk and sets up wares about every six weeks - too little in my opinion. Here are the two groups from which they primarily buy: Equal Exchange (http://www.equalexchange.coop/) which sells coffee, tea, chocolates and other items and Just Haiti (http://justhaiti.org/) coffee - a Fair TradeFederation member.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @TanoCalvenoa: That IS good news, Tano. Buy local! So glad you have that option.

    • profile image

      TanoCalvenoa 3 years ago

      Excellent choices here, these items I recognize from the one store in my town that I like to shop at for groceries.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @GeorgeneMBramlage: Me too! I wish there were more to choose from! I checked for an organization called Fair Exchange but did not find one. Did you mean Equal Exchange?

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      Delighted to find out that Annie's has gummy fruit snacks. I wish you had written more about Fair Trade items. A group at my church sells Fair Trade food items including small chocolate squares which are a bit pricey but taste great. I believe there are Fair Exchange.

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @Vicki_P: Equal Exchange is an excellent organization. Thank you for mentioning it. I am sorry that things are so tight for you right now. I've been there!

      There are times in many of our lives when we barely make enough to eat and keep shelter over our heads. Other times, we have to pinch pennies so we can keep the children in nice clothes for school--which studies have shown makes a difference in how their teachers treat them, or to help our elderly parents transition to assisted care. So I understand completely your having to draw a line and wait for better times.

      People often tell me they cannot afford to pay more for Fair Trade and organic items, and I deeply understand that. I have more trouble feeling compassion for them when, with the next breath, they share their excitement about trips to Hawaii and abroad, the new Mercedes they just bought, and how they just got a $600 pair of shoes for only $300. It happens! LOL!

      But I can't fault them either. I realize they are making choices and voting with their dollars for what is important to them.

      Personally, I consider the premium I pay for Fair Trade items and foods a tithe and/or a contribution. Yes, it reduces the amount of money I have to give to charities outright each year, but voting with my purchasing dollars is the best way I can help to develop the socially responsible markets I want to see and to ensure that I am not buying products made with child labor or near-slave labor.

      Fortunately, most of us who live in this country have the means to make such decisions consciously with every purchase we make.

      Thank you for looking toward the day you can vote with your dollars for a better life for all the artisans and workers who bring so many goods to our stores. Best wishes. I hope your situation improves soon.

    • profile image

      Vicki_P 3 years ago

      Nice article! I believe Equal Exchange would fall into your categories here . . . I've been wanting to order from them, but cost has to matter to us right now too. Anyway, if anyone is interested, http://shop.equalexchange.coop/

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @flycatcherrr: You're welcome. After years of searching, I was glad to find some candies I enjoyed eating myself, that the grandkids loved, and that I wouldn't be embarrassed handing out. Eco keeps getting easier and easier!

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 3 years ago

      You've just given us a lot of delicious ways to have a guilt-reduced Halloween. :) Great suggestions here, Kathryn; thanks for thinking of this!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @Brite-Ideas: Thanks!

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      I've never thought to use something like this as a halloween treat, great suggestion

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @Kaylab123 LM: SO glad to hear that! I'm a big supporter of buying local. It is my preferred shopping method as well.

    • Kaylab123 LM profile image

      Kaylab123 LM 3 years ago

      I was already planning on buying healthier, and more local/fair trade products for Halloween this year. And luckily, I live by some great stores that promote these kinds of candy products!

    • ecogranny profile image
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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      @Sable: Thank you. Happy trick or treats!

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      Sable 3 years ago

      I never knew Halloween could b so green! Great post!

    • kislanyk profile image

      Marika 4 years ago from Cyprus

      Now that's a candy of a different type. And it's healthier too.

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