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Barilla pasta to make ‘inclusive’ ads despite chair saying he would ‘never feature an ad with a gay family’

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Reader comments

  1. Derek Williams 4 Nov 2013, 5:38pm

    I very much welcome these moves by Mr Barilla.

  2. Good! Guido Barilla and colleagues are learning!

    Let’s never forget our economic power. We must always loudly threaten to hit bigotry where it hurts: in the pocket!

  3. Colin (London) 4 Nov 2013, 6:26pm

    See people can change. Sometimes just need a little help and understanding.

    Great practice and lets hope many other businesses copy this going forward.

    Well done Mr Barilla and thank you.

  4. BlokeToys 4 Nov 2013, 6:36pm

    They declined to comment on sales? Translation – they have been hit hard by a boycott. And rightly so.

    This proves that our money is powerful, too many people seem to think that boycotts do not work, when they are one of the most successful methods of changing opinions not only within companies by in the societies in which they operate.

    LGBT rights around the world didn’t only happen through protest and pride marches, it happened because the society was encouraged to change their views by open discussion. We would not be where we are now with gay marriage coming in all around the world if it were not for media and companies encouraging social evolution.

    Countries where homophobia is still rife do not talk about sexuality, do not have gay characters on TV, and the governments hold to outdated religious views and force those views on their public – Italy, Russia, Poland, many African nations, Muslim nations… they are all socially backward and not evolving like the rest of us.

  5. onesecond 4 Nov 2013, 7:41pm

    Obviously the sales went down. Good! :) I for one only change my mind if and when I see a happy gay couple in a barilla comercial.

  6. Robert in S. Kensington 4 Nov 2013, 7:42pm

    Good to hear although it may not change his personal views. I suspect this also has to do with rival Italian pasta companies such as Bertolli which said it was all inclusive and would be happy to take Barilla’s customers away from them. I think we can all assume this was more to do with economics, profits but glad he’s learned something from it, hopefully.

  7. Whatever motivated this turnaround it is a great result. It’s good to know we do have the power to change things by sticking together and taking action.

  8. As with all bigots, a threat to their income always serves to refocus their morals. Freaking hypocrites.

  9. The meetings have helped open our eyes and ears to the evolution taking place in the world outside Parma. As a millionaire he must be living a very sheltered life
    Has has never traveled, viewed television, listen to the news or opened a magazine.
    What a crack of ////

    1. I think it’s too easy for those of us lucky enough to live in quite advanced metropolitan societies to forget what life can be like in the smug comforts of Italy’s more prosperous provinces. I can assure you, the exposure to anything “unconventional” is severely limited – think Surrey in the 1970s.

      Also, let’s not forget how very recently unstereotypical gay characters have been part of UK TV – very very little before the last 10 years. I believe few European countries can come close to what we’re so easily taking for granted here.

  10. Lesson learned? I for one do not care, he is only worried about all of the money he has and is losing…still will not make a difference to me. Damage done.

  11. Jon (Malaysia) 5 Nov 2013, 2:22am

    I didn’t start any earthquakes, or spawn any tsunamis, or start any raging fires anywhere in the world today, but man do I feel powerful after reading this.

  12. Too late. Mustard after dinner.

  13. Aryugaetu 5 Nov 2013, 5:33pm

    A nice start, but I’m not about to buy anything with “Barilla” for quite awhile. Words are cheap, and in the US, corporations are experts at filling employee quotas for the sole purpose of being cloaked under “equality”. They will hire dozens of minorities to sweep their floors at midnight for minimum wage, then concoct reasons not to promote them (personally happened to me at the gay CEO Cook’s precious Apple with my proof and complaints left unanswered).

    But, you never see these “token” employees in any public capacity. When true change is visible, then I’ll reconsider my opinion. Until then, as long as he keeps proving “…he would never feature an ad with a gay family’, I believe I will never serve an Italian meal with Barilla pasta. (Besides, it really does taste like the cardboard box it comes in. When possible always buy local.)

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