packed lunch (also called sack lunch or bag lunch in North
America) is a lunch prepared at home and carried to be eaten
somewhere else, such as school, a workplace, or at an outing. The
food is usually wrapped in plastic, aluminum foil, or paper and
can be carried ("packed") in a lunchbox, paper bag (a "sack"), or
While packed lunches are usually taken from
home by the people who are going to eat them, in Mumbai, India,
tiffin boxes are most often picked up from the home and brought to
workplaces later in the day by so-called dabbawallas. It is also
possible to buy packed lunches from stores in several countries.
In the United States, an informal meeting at
work, over lunch, where everyone brings a packed lunch, is a
brown-bag lunch or colloquially a "brown bag", and the practice
known as brownbagging. There are also white and other color
bags for seasonal use.
One such brown bag lunch was used as a
deliberate rebuff, of the Chinese hosts, by the United States
delegation at peace negotiations in Kaesong during the Korean War.
The Chinese hosts offered lunch and watermelon to the U.S. guests,
which the U.S. delegates, who considered lunching with one's
opposition to be fraternizing with the enemy, rejected in favor of
their own packed lunches.