| Health |

Dentists Will Buy Back Halloween Candy From Kids

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of South Florida and help keep the future of New Times free.

Rather than trash the surplus of Butterfingers, Reese's Cups, and Laffy Taffy hauled into your house by lucrative trick-or-treaters, bring it to one of a dozen South Florida dentists and orthodontists who are offering kids incentives for trading it in.

Some dentists pay kids a $1 per pound for dumping the sugary loot. At least two offices in Broward are dishing out $2 a pound. 

It's a win-win: Parents are eager to be rid of the tempting sweets, and kids are delighted to receive money. "The smiles on their faces are priceless," said Stephen Bender, office manager for pediatric dentist Fara Bender in Lake Worth.

Dentists and orthodontists participating in the Halloween Candy BuyBack set up their own rules for when they accept candy drop-offs and what they provide in exchange. Some hand out goody bags with toothbrushes or other nonmonetary incentives, while many pay $1 a pound up to a preset limit. The sweets are packed up and shipped to Operation Gratitude, which includes them in packages sent  to U.S. military troops overseas. 

Some families write notes for the military personnel and add them to their Halloween haul. Usually, the youngsters surrender the sweets without objection, the dentists report. 

"For the most part, I think they go through and pick out all the stuff they want and trade in the stuff that’s not so important to them, and some kids don’t care about candy," said dentist Brian P. Rask of Pompano Beach. Rask and dentist Robert Dolgow in Lauderdhill are each offering $2 a pound at their offices.

Before the piles are shipped off, dentists and their staff acknowledge, a few items may be pilfered.

"It's tempting," said Mary Ellen Blanco, an orthodontics assistant at Caponera Orthodontics in Plantation. "Reese's Pieces are a popular one here," she said. But the staff is selective, she said. "We left the good ones [for the troops]." 

Information about participating dentists by zip code is on the Halloween Candy BuyBack website

Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in South Florida.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in South Florida.