The ban on flying with more 100 milliliters of liquids like shampoo, wine, or toothpaste in a carry-on bag has been the bane of travelers for years, but now the airport in Genoa, Italy, has decided it’s time to relax that rule, but only for pesto.
According to The Local, Genoa Airport in northern Italy has decided that while toothpaste and shampoo still need to be travel-sized, travelers will be able to take large amounts of pesto on the airplanes with them. Pesto is arguably the most prized local product of Genoa, and people flying out of the airport frequently wanted to take some with them. Because of the limit on carry-on liquids, though, airport authorities have confiscated hundreds of tins of pesto over the years, airport authorities say.
The tiny limit on the amount of liquid allowed to be taken on a plane has caused problems for travelers all over the world. One woman chugged an entire bottle of Cognac rather than relinquish it to airport security, and then was barred from getting on the plane for being wildly intoxicated. Another pair of tourists drank a $1,200 bottle of aphrodisiac wine in the middle of the security checkpoint rather than give it up.
Wine is still subject to the 100-milliliter limit out of Genoa, but now at least nobody will have to eat an entire jar of pesto to keep it from security thanks to the airport’s new “Pesto is Good” initiative. From now on, people leaving on direct flights out of Genoa will be able to bring up to 500 grams, or slightly over a pound, of pesto Genovese onboard in exchange for a donation to Flying Angels, a charity that provides airfare for children who need to travel for medical care.
Travelers who make the donation and participate in the program will have their pesto screened in a special X-ray and then marked with a sticker showing it has been through security. The program started at the beginning of June, and in just 20 days more than 500 people have participated. Tourists have enjoyed being able to bring pesto in their carry-ons as souvenirs, but locals have really loved being able to go on vacation without having to worry about finding decent pesto while abroad, authorities say.
Now that real Genoa pesto is easier to get, check out our best pesto recipes for some good thing to do with it.