Teal Pumpkin Project

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Trick or treating is an annual tradition that many children look forward to, but nearly two kids in every classroom has food allergies, leaving millions of children unable to eat the candy they pick up on Halloween. A growing campaign is trying to change that and raise awareness.
Lukas Mazur is a happy, healthy six year old who loves sweets and snacking, so naturally trick or treating would seem like a perfect fit. Unfortunately, Lukas' severe allergy to peanuts and tree nuts turned Halloween into a drag.

Lukas explains, "Because your friends can have all of these great treats, but you have a nut allergy, so you can't eat all that stuff."

But this year, Lukas couldn't wait to put on his costume and show us this teal pumpking on his front step. For trick or treaters with food allergies, it's a signal that a home is handing out non-food treats. It's part of an inclusion and awareness campaign by the group Food Allergy Research and Education called 'The Teal Pumpkin Project,' now in its third year.

Nancy Gregory of Food Allergy Research and Education says, "With one in thirteen kids having a food allergy here in the U.S, chances are that one of these kids lives right down your block."

The number of homes participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project is growing. The group behind it says their ultimate goal is to have one teal pumpkin on every block in America.

Lukas' mother, Jayme, says, "I think it would be incredible if it can happen."

Lukas' mother says their home is the first on the street to embrace the teal pumpkin, but she and Lukas are hopeful it won't stop there.

"It makes me happy that people do it, so I can be included with Halloween," Lukas says.

The Teal Pumpkin Project has an interactive map here where families can track participating homes. Last year, homes from all 50 states and 14 countries joined in.

Segment Sponsored by: Mercy Health System