‘Tis the season to be jolly, but with 24% of boys and 27% of girls aged  5-17 years now sporting a ‘jolly’ appearance all year round, this Christmas I am calling for change. (1) I am calling for a boycott on candy canes in Christmas cards.

Of course candy canes are not the complete cause of childhood obesity, but with as much as 51% of our annual weight gain happening over the six week Christmas period, do we really need more empty calories? (23)

Nor are they the sole cause of dental decay, but with 48.7% of children aged 5-6 years having dental decay in baby teeth and nearly 45.1% of children aged 12 years having decay in permanent teeth, do we really need to give them more sugar? (45)

I am sure it is possible to have a very merry Christmas without candy canes, the empty calories they provide or the tooth decay they can cause.

After all candy canes aren’t the epitome of Christmas anyway, are they? I might sound like the Christmas Grinch, but really does skipping on the candy canes really doesn’t change the meaning of Christmas.

Of course we still want to be teaching our children the joy of giving and sharing, of kindness and goodwill, but it is ludicrous to think that a candy cane stuffed in an envelope encapsulates this Christmas spirit.

So join me on my boycott. Sign the pledge at The Kids Menu and say no to candy canes this year.

Other small tokens for children to give to their friends could include:

  • Homemade or personalised Christmas decorations or other craft
  • Novelty Reindeer food (Place oats and glitter in a small zip lock bag or jar with a little note to leave out for Rudolph and co.)
  • Small books or colouring sheets
  • Stickers, stamps, pens, pencils, erasers
  • Home-made beaded bracelets
  • Bubbles or glow sticks
  • Home-made Christmas playdough (white playdough with red and green glitter, wrapped and tired with ribbon)
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  • lol didn’t have to worry about candy canes last year


  • I hate candy canes. They’re not nice at all.


  • I’m not sure how many really get eaten anyway, we just binned a whole bunch we got over xmas because my boys don’t really like mint


  • yeah my child’s school ask to provide other gifts besides candy canes but last year they were fine with it.


  • Yes I agree there are far better things to give. Even something to hang on the tree


  • My son gets them in the Christmas cards, but he doesn’t eat them.


  • Boycotting Candy Cane – that’s a bit ambitious. They aren’t to my taste but I wouldn’t lead a revolt over them – they only come around once a year!

    • I agree; they only come around once a year!


  • The dreaded candy cane…in every Christmas card.


  • I have never really been a fan of candy cane, I like the little ones and using them as part of the gift wrapping.


  • The kids tend to get candy canes from all directions at Christmas, then they sit in the cupboard until next Christmas when I throw them out.


  • I coldnt live not having candy canes at Christmas


  • I love the look of Candy Canes and what they represent but I’ve never actually liked eating them, lol.


  • We’re not big on candy canes at our place either.. They are more for decoration than eating.. Not many kids like minty flavoured lollies anyway..


  • Candy canes are not that nice to eat anyway!


  • We use some candy as decorations for the tree and gift cards.

    • I agree; they look good on the tree and on cards.

      • Some good recipes; using those candy canes in the recipes section. I am going to try some with received candy canes.


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