girls watching scary movie

By: Dr. Amanda Votruba

Halloween is almost here! Over two-thirds of households plan on handing out candy to trick-or-treaters this year according to the National Confectioners Association.

A few interesting Halloween candy facts:
• The average American household spends $44 a year on Halloween candy!
• An incredible 90 million pounds of chocolate candy is sold during Halloween week.
• 70% of candy purchased Halloween week is chocolate. Candy corn a distant second choice with 12% of purchases.

Is there a time limit before Halloween candy goes bad? expert Dr. Amanda Votruba, pediatrician with Methodist Physicians Clinic says, “All candy does have a shelf life. The moisture and sugar content are two factors that cause candy to deteriorate.”

Here are Dr. Votruba’s guidelines for safe candy consumption:

Dark chocolate: up to 2 years (Wrapped in foil and kept in a cool, dark, dry place)
Milk or white chocolate: 8 to 10 months.
Candy Corn: 9 months unopened, 3 months opened. (Keep in an airtight container)
Hard candies: up to a year at room temperature or in cool or dry places
Jellied candies: Unwrapped 6 to 9 month, wrapped up to a year (Keep at room temperature)
Gum: 6 to 9 months if sealed
Caramel: up to 9 months (Store at room temperature away from heat or light)
Nuts in candy: cashews and peanuts up to 9 months at room temperature, 1 year refrigerated
Almonds you may keep up to a year in the refrigerator or at room temperature.

Have a fun, happy Halloween!