Why is Milan about to ban ice cream and pizza after midnight?

Why is Milan about to ban ice cream and pizza after midnight?

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It is a well-established tradition in Italian culture: enjoying a delicious gelato or steaming pizza even late at night. But in Milan, it seems that this habit is about to undergo a drastic change. The city is considering banning the sale of ice cream and pizza after midnight in an effort to address a number of complaints related to nighttime noise. This decision is not new and has not been welcomed by many.

The reason for the ban

The proposed ban is motivated by a desire to protect the “peace and health” of Milan residents. A legislative document has been submitted by the city’s local government, and if approved, the ban could go into effect next month and last until November. However, many local ice cream vendors and pizzerias are not at all happy about this decision, as they are used to selling ice cream late into the night as part of Italian culture.

The main objective of the ban is to counter the problem of noisy groups gathering on the streets during the night hours, disturbing residents’ rest. The ban would apply to 12 districts of Milan, including the central districts of Brera and Ticinese, as well as Darsena, Lazzaretto, Corso Como and the popular nightlife areas of Arco della Pace and Navigli.

Milan Mayor Giuseppe Sala said that a “substantial part of the population complains about excessive noise.” However, the deputy mayor in charge of security, Marco Granelli, has tried to strike a balance between the sociality, entertainment, peace and health of residents and the economic activity of merchants and entrepreneurs.

History of the ban

This is not the first time the city of Milan has tried to ban ice cream sold late at night. In 2013, the city council, under the leadership of then-Mayor Giuliano Pisapia, tried unsuccessfully to prevent ice cream consumers from walking the streets until late at night. The proposed measures were met with negative reactions, known as the “battle of the cones.” This included a protest movement called “Occupy Gelato,” which was a play on the popular socio-political movement opposing social and economic inequality.

As of today, Milan citizens have until early May to file any appeals or suggest changes to the proposed new law. However, Lino Stoppani, president of Fipe, the Italian federation of public and tourist operators, said that “the problem of nightlife exists, but this rule will only create damage to commercial activities.”

Mixed reactions and opinions

The proposal to ban ice cream and pizza after midnight has elicited mixed reactions from residents and merchants. Some argue that the ban is necessary to ensure peace and quiet at night and respect for residents, while others see it as an excessive interference in daily life and a hindrance to business activities.

Some experts argue that the ban could lead to a reduction in nighttime noise and improved quality of life for residents. However, others point out that the problem of nighttime noise is not only limited to the consumption of ice cream and pizza, but also involves other activities such as bars and nightclubs.

Italian tradition and culture

The consumption of ice cream and pizza has always been an integral part of Italian culture and tradition. Italy is famous for its cuisine and high-quality food products, and gelato and pizza are examples of this. Italian gelato is world-renowned for its creaminess and authentic flavors, while Italian pizza is loved for its thin, crispy crust and variety of delicious toppings.

Many tourists visit Italy to enjoy authentic gelato and pizza, and Milan is one of the best-known Italian cities for its excellent culinary offerings. Gelato and pizza are considered a treat to be enjoyed at any time of the day, including late at night.

Possible alternatives

Despite the proposed ban, there are alternatives that could be considered to address the nighttime noise problem without completely banning the sale of ice cream and pizza after midnight. For example, a stricter regulatory system could be introduced for nightclubs and bars to limit noise and disturbance to residents.

In addition, awareness and education campaigns could be organized to promote respect for night hours and quiet residential neighborhoods.


The proposal to ban the sale of ice cream and pizza after midnight in Milan has sparked heated debates and mixed reactions. While some support the ban as a necessary measure to ensure tranquility at night, others see it as an excessive interference in Italian daily life and traditions.

It is important to strike a balance between protecting the rights of residents and respecting cultural and culinary traditions. One solution might be to regulate nighttime activities more strictly, without completely banning the sale of ice cream and pizza after midnight.

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