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Italy serves up the world's longest pizza

Milan: Italy has beaten the world record for the longest  pizza, serving up a sizzling margherita over one and a half kilometres long at Milan's 2015 Expo.

Guinness World Records judge Lorenzo Veltri on Saturday handed Italy the crown for a 1595.45 metre masterpiece made using 1500 kilograms of tomatoes, over one-and-a-half tonnes of mozzarella and a river of extra virgin olive oil.

The 80 chefs from all over Italy who took part in the creation snatched the title from Spain, which had held the record with a pizza that measured 1141.5 metres in length

Admiring crowds in Milan gathered alongside the cheese-topped bonanza, which was stretched out over 800 tables, before hungrily getting in line for a slice.

It was first come, first served for the 30,000 or so visitors to the Expo, with 300 metres of the pizza also destined for the city's Banco Alimentare food bank.

The Italian delicacy, which took three minutes per metre to cook and was prepared in five ovens adapted for the effort, was made to celebrate the 126th anniversary of the margherita.

The recipe was first whipped up in 1889 by Raffaele Esposito of the Brandi pizzeria in the grand Bourbon palace in Naples in southern Italy – a summer residence for the kings of the Two Sicilies – for Queen Regina Margherita.

Pizza-lovers hope winning the record will help boost international support for Italy's bid to get the classic dish on the UNESCO cultural heritage list, with pizza associations gathering more than 300,000 signatures so far.

AFP