Make the most of spooky veg to reduce Halloween food waste

Release date: 22 October 2018

With Halloween just around the corner Gloucestershire’s Joint Waste Team is encouraging residents to make the most of their seasonal vegetables in a bid to reduce the 15 million pumpkins wasted annually. 

Research shows that one of the biggest problems is that many people simply consider their pumpkin a decoration rather than a source of food.

Councillor Sue Coakley, Chair of Gloucestershire’s Joint Waste Committee and the Cabinet Member for Environment at Cotswold District Council, says,

“Each year it is estimated that 18 thousand tonnes of edible pumpkin will be ditched nationally.  While pumpkins and carved Jack O’Lanterns are synonymous with Halloween, we are asking residents to take a moment to think about the waste created at this time of year and to try and reduce this if they can.

“To help residents make the most of their pumpkin we have added a range of recipes on the Joint Waste Team website to suit every pocket and palate.  Dishes such as soup can be inexpensive, warming on a cold winter’s evening and a quick and easy way to use up spare pumpkin and other vegetables which may be beyond their best.  The inedible parts of the pumpkin can be composted or recycled at the kerbside, avoiding the need for anything to end up in the bin."

Residents in Cotswold District are reminded that any leftover pumpkins can be recycled using the weekly kerbside food waste service (either by cutting them up and placing them in food waste caddies or popping them whole into garden waste bins if subscribed to this optional service).   Anyone needing a food waste caddy can pick one up from the Council’s Reception teams at either Trinity Road, Cirencester or Moreton Area Centre, and they can also  request one to be delivered by calling 01285 623123 or by ordering online at



Did you know?

  • Fresh pumpkins can be stored for many months as long as the skin has not been damaged. 
  • Pumpkin which needs to be used sooner can be cut up into cubes, cooked and then frozen to be thawed later for use in curries, stews and lasagnes.  
  • Alternatively, the flesh can be made into a thick puree or a tasty soup, both of which will freeze well, while the seeds can be roasted for a cheap, healthy snack.
  • The Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) estimates that households in the UK throwaway 7.1 million tonnes of food, approximately 5 million tonnes of which could have been eaten.  
  • The amount of pumpkin thrown away each year is enough to provide a bowl of soup for each person in the UK.

Joint Waste Partnership

The Joint Waste Partnership provides waste and recycling services on behalf of Cheltenham Borough Council, Cotswold District Council, Forest of Dean District Council, Tewkesbury Borough Council and Gloucestershire County Council. 

Cotswold District Council
Trinity Road