Razors in Halloween Candy? What about Drugs?

1 min read · 2 sections

Some of us may have heard the urban legend about razor blades being hidden in candy apples on Halloween, and some of us are old enough to remember our parents checking every piece of candy to make sure there weren’t razor blades hidden in our loot.

Now, parents don’t worry about sharp objects in their kids’ candy bars. It’s drugs—specifically fentanyl, disguised as rainbow-colored candies—that are cause for grave concern.

Drugs in Halloween Candy: Superstition or Fact?

Bowl of halloween candyTo be sure, there is no data that a child has been killed or seriously injured by a contaminated treat picked up in the course of trick-or-treating. But there have been drug-related scary stories associated with Halloween night.

In 2018, for instance, a 5-year-old child was hospitalized due to methamphetamine consumption shortly after trick-or-treating. However, a police investigation determined the drugs didn’t come from candy—they belonged to the boy’s father.

Also in 2018, parents in Aloha, Oregon, reported feeling ill after eating Sour Patch Kids their children had received while trick-or-treating. Testing revealed that the candy contained methamphetamine. Fortunately, the children hadn’t consumed any of the tainted treats and the parents recovered after a precautionary trip to the hospital.

In 2019, a woman found a small bag of a substance believed to be heroin in a batch of candy at a Trunk-or-Treat event in New Jersey. Awful—for sure—but the small bag of heroin was not mistaken for candy.

And now the latest scare in Halloween candy mayhem is fentanyl. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid responsible for thousands of overdoses and deaths over the last 20 years. In fact, according to the the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), 2 milligrams of fentanyl (an amount the size of a sharpened point of a pencil), can kill the average American. That’s why it’s important to  understand the danger that this and other substances pose but not panic.

Take No Chances

While the chances of finding drugs in your kids’ Halloween candy are not much higher than seeing a ghost, you should always exercise caution. Here are some helpful tips:

  • If you can, go trick-or-treating with your kids or at least make sure they’re supervised by someone you trust.
  • Sort through your kids’ candy to make sure nothing looks out of the ordinary.
  • Trash the following:
    • Candy that has been opened.
    • Unwrapped candy.
    • Candy from brands you’ve never heard of.
    • Anything that looks remotely suspicious.

If you take these precautions, you’ve effectively reduced the chances of your child getting hurt from Halloween candy.


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