Halloween and all that; visiting the supermarket today, the depressing sight of rows and rows of “pumpkins” manufactured out of plastic…useless unnecessary junk to create more polluting waste. One might wonder exactly how many shoppers will buy one and put it away carefully for next year after its one night stand?
The way this festival has been promoted and pushed by all those wishing to sell more junk is utterly depressing; the traditional celebration slipped away many generations ago when all things modern seemed preferable to ancient traditions. It’s pretty clear that the development of China as manufacturer of ultra-cheap consumer throwaways helped resurrect a wide range of commercial opportunities to “celebrate”.
Fun dressing up from the “dressing up box”, party games and a few sweet treats kept the festival in low key for decades; accessible to all who chose by simply being an impromptu event; no special sweet-collecting receptacles required. The extent of Halloween now is nonsensical in the light of a world drowning in plastic waste and junk destined for landfill and where plastic fibres are ingested in our seafood and in the air we breathe.
How many of those plastic pumpkins will end up in the ocean?
Legislation is the only answer as consumers will continue to choose what’s on offer, specially when it’s so cheap; with schools holding spooky discos for primary-age children and our Environment Minister still debating banning of plastic-stemmed cotton buds, it’s clear that little will happen until the threat to human life is as bloodied and bruised as those zombie characters appear to be.