Two people in costume enjoying a halloween party.

How to throw a zero waste Halloween party

If you’ve got a budding eco-warrior or wannabe VSCO girl in your household – or you’re just environmentally conscious – a zero waste Halloween party is a great way to celebrate the season with minimal environmental impact.

Here are our top five tips for a no waste Halloween party that offers no compromise on the fun factor, or the fear factor if you’re going for spooky vibes.

1. Plastic perils

Single-use plastics are definitely out. Opt instead for reusable plates and cutlery, or paper plates that are made of recyclable materials and suitable for recycling again.

This is a bit of a minefield – some paper plates are coated to make them more resistant to wet foods, but this can make them non-recyclable too.

If in doubt, check the label as eco-friendly manufacturers will tend to make it clear if their products can be recycled, and it’s not always easy to tell the difference at first glance.

2. Dark delights

Think about the energy footprint of your party – including the carbon emissions associated with heating and lighting it.

You could instead hold your party outdoors using solar lighting or candles for a low-carbon alternative, and use bits and bobs to turn your garden into a DIY graveyard or similarly spooky scene.

Remember to tell your guests to wrap up warm if you choose to do this, but weather permitting, a Halloween garden party can be a lot of fun for all involved.

3. Home-made horrors

You can make all kinds of party favours at home with recycled and upcycled materials.

Pumpkin cookies are a great way to use the scooped-out innards of your jack-o-lanterns and a real talking point for guests as they’re likely to divide opinion as to how nice they taste!

You could also opt to bake pumpkin pie American-style if your family or your guests are among those who are starting to embrace the USA’s more celebratory approach to this particular holiday.

4. Eco invites

Make your own eco-friendly party invites using spare art supplies. Or for an even more resource-friendly option, just email your guests instead.

You can set up an event on Facebook and ask people to RSVP. It’s not foolproof, but it should give you a better idea of guest numbers so you can avoid buying in too many supplies and adding to the amount you waste unnecessarily.

If you’re planning to hand out party bags, consider making them out of old newspapers or getting paper bags rather than the dreaded single-use plastics.

5. Pumpkin picking

Pick your own pumpkins are becoming increasingly popular in the UK and an ever-growing number of farms allow you to choose a pumpkin from their crop.

If you’re environmentally focused, ask your local farm if their pumpkins are organic and try to get one from there if so.

Even if nowhere near you grows organic pumpkins, locally grown crops should still be better for the environment than buying a supermarket pumpkin that has clocked up a hair-raising number of carbon miles during its delivery route.