Barilla president apologizes again for anti-gay remarks
By Chris Isidore @CNNMoneyOctober 3, 2013: 11:52 AM ET
NEW YORK (CNNMoney)
The head of Barilla pasta issued a new apology and said he will meet with gay groups, adding he "has much to learn" about the evolution of the family.
Guido Barilla, president of Barilla, said on an Italian radio program last week that he wouldn't feature same-sex couples in his company's commercials because he prefers the "traditional" family. The company quickly issued a statement apologizing for the comment.
"Through my entire life I have always respected every person I've met, including gays and their families, without any distinctions," he said. "I've never discriminated against anyone." He said he was "depressed and saddened" by the reaction to his comments.
Some Barilla competitors have jumped on the controversy. Buitoni posted an ad on its Facebook page proclaimed "Pasta for All" and had pictures of pairs of tortellini pasta showing same-sex couples.
An online petition on Change.org, started by Linda Ferraro, an Italian-American woman who said her adult son is gay, asks the grocery chain Stop & Shop to pull Barilla from its shelves due to the comments. It has received nearly 8,800 signatures.