Barilla Pasta Boycotted Over Anti-Gay Comments

Staff Writer
Another food company enters the LGBT debate

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Barilla's chairman made some controversial remarks, prompting a boycott.

Looks like the LGBTQ community and their allies have another food company to boycott, as the chairman of Barilla pastas went on Radio 24 Wednesday, defending his decision to only have heterosexual families in commercials.

"I would never do [a commercial] with a homosexual family, not for lack of respect but because we don't agree with them. Ours is a classic family where the woman plays a fundamental role," Guido Barilla said in the interview.

The pasta company, which Reuters notes uses the tagline, "Where there's Barilla, there's home," oftentimes features a family living in Italy, sharing pasta in their commercials. Unfortunately for equality, Barilla won't be using a homosexual family anytime soon, and it seems that Guido Barilla isn't worried about losing customers.

If gays "like our pasta and our advertising, they'll eat our pasta, if they don't like it then they will not eat it and they will eat another brand," Barilla said.

Of course, those comments have sparked outrage, with gay rights group Equality Italia asking consumers to boycott the company's products. "You can't mess around with consumers, including gay ones," supporters tweeted.

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Since the outcry, Barilla issued a statement apologizing for the comments, backtracking and saying, "Barilla features families in its commercials because it embraces anyone, and they have always been identified with our brand." Of course, he's claiming that he was only making a point that "the woman plays a central role in the family." So, Barilla, we can expect a lesbian couple in the next ad? Yeah, didn't think so.