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Milan Implements Midnight Ban on Ice Cream Sales to Curb Nightlife Disturbances

by Alice

Milan, renowned for its vibrant nightlife, is set to enforce a prohibition on the purchase of ice cream and takeaway beverages after midnight, effective from May 17. The proposed measure aims to address issues of excessive noise, disturbances, and unruly behavior prevalent in the city’s prime nocturnal hotspots.

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Scheduled to be in effect from May 17 until November 4, the ban targets a wide array of establishments, including public venues, local businesses, artisanal takeout enterprises, commercial outlets, and vending machines. It strictly prohibits the sale and takeaway of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic food and beverages between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m.

Expressing concern over the sweeping nature of the ban, Marco Barbieri, the Secretary-General of the union Confcommercio Milano, voiced skepticism, stating, “A ban on the sale and takeaway of food and beverages of any kind means that from after midnight it will no longer be possible to sell an ice cream cone or even a take-away bottle of water. Does the Council realize what it is doing?”

Barbieri advocates for an alternative approach, proposing increased local police surveillance to maintain order. He highlights the recent hike in public land occupancy taxes, asserting that subtracting two hours of evening operations from businesses constitutes an undue burden.

Anticipating opposition from various quarters, including local neighborhood associations, citizen groups, shop owners, and unions, a contentious battle with the local Council looms on the horizon. Dubbed the ‘Ice-Cream Wars of 2024,’ this impending clash underscores the significance of balancing public order with the vitality of Milan’s nightlife scene.

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