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Barilla stops being fu-silly: the pasta company now supports same-sex adoption

Steph Kyriacou September 19, 2017
(Getty)

(Getty)

The pasta company whose chairman said he would “never feature an ad with a gay family” has u-turned and become LGBTQ+-inclusive.

In 2013, chairman Guido Barilla told an Italian radio station that his company was against the concept of same-sex parents.

“I would never do an ad with a homosexual family,” he said.

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(Guido Barilla/Getty)

“If the gays don’t like it they can go and eat another brand.”

He continued: “For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the fundamental values of the company.

“I have no respect for adoption by gay families because this concerns a person who is not able to choose.”

He has since apologised for these offensive words, saying: “It is clear that I have a lot to learn about the lively debate concerning the evolution of the family.”

In the years following Barilla’s apology, the company has appointed a Diversity and Inclusion Board.

And Barilla earned a perfect score several years in a row on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index, which tracks companies’ policies about LGBTQ+ people.

Some people still weren’t convinced, voicing their disdain for the company on social media and using the hashtag #boicottabarilla – which translates, of course, to ‘boycott Barilla’.

One commenter wrote: “Nice to know the guy made amends.

“Still, I have no plans to go back to purchasing Barilla products.”

They added: “While it’s possible he had a change of heart, it’s more likely that the pain he felt was in his wallet and not his heart.”

The positive turnaround has however been noticed by a number of media outlets, including the Huffington Post, which labelled Barilla “Most Improved” in an article discussing “5 Companies Going Above And Beyond For The LGBT Community.”

Barilla has also collaborated with lesbian YouTuber Hannah Hart over recent years, appointing her its ‘pasta girl’ in 2016.

attends MasterCard Preview - Barilla's Italian Bites On Yhe Beach during 2016 Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival Presented By FOOD & WINE at Beachside at Delano on February 25, 2016 in Miami Beach, Florida.
(Getty)

The company has also created a YouTube segment called ‘While The Water Boils’ – a Q&A session which happens in the time it takes to cook pasta.

The series has done well, and has featured guests like Wanda Sykes and Bill Nye.

Season 3 is available on YouTube now.

More: barilla, cooking, Hannah Hart, pasta, same sex marriage, US, while the water boils

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