There’s good news for pesto lovers.

The airport in Genoa, Italy, home of the famous sauce, is allowing passengers to take pesto with them on flights, providing they make a small donation of less than a dollar to the Flying Angels charity, which helps provide money for sick children to be flown overseas for treatment. Travelers giving donations will get a special sticker to put on their jar of pesto.

Since June 1, when the program started, some 500 jars of the basil, cheese, pine nut and olive oil sauce have already been allowed to pass through security, airport officials said.


“We consider it an amazing result”, airport press officer Nur El Gawohary told The Independent.

There are a few rules. Passengers can only take a 500-gram jar or two 250-gram jars, they must be flying directly from Genoa, and the pesto must be from Genoa.

Jars are scanned by a special X-ray machine before being allowed on board.

Airport officials say the idea came to them after having seized hundred of jars of pesto from travelers trying to take a little taste of Genoa back with them.

“Every year we were confiscating hundreds of pesto jars at security control, and throwing them away,” El Gawohary says. “It was a waste of food and an annoyance for our passengers. So we started to think about how we could allow people traveling with hand baggage only to take pesto with them.”

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