Italian meat, no genetically modified foods, seasonal fruit and an ethnic meal once a month are among the requirements the city council has stipulated in the new contract for companies wishing to provide school lunches in the capital. The new regulations have been decided by dieticians, paediatricians and food biology experts to guarantee the quality of the 145,000 lunches served daily in schools across Rome.

Companies will have to provide 150 different dishes with traceable ingredients. Every meal must begin with an antipasto of raw fresh vegetables such as carrots and tomatoes, and fruit will be served for the afternoon snack. The monthly ethnic meal should be a typical dish from Bangladesh, Romania, Albania, Poland, Peru, China, Morocco or the Philippines, representing the main foreign communities present in Rome.

The cost of each school meal will be