Barilla CEO Says He Likes Gays Now, So Please Buy Some Of His PastaS

The CEO of Barilla, who a month and change ago found himself in hot, heavily salted water for saying he'd never include same sex couples in Barilla advertising because ew gayz! has changed his tune, and the company is now establishing a "diversity and inclusion board" for reasons that I'm assuming are 100% about just being a good person and 0% related to realizing that Gay Money is worth the same as Straight Money.

According to Reuters, after his homophobic remarks during a September radio interview, Barilla CEO Guido Barilla hasn't just offered an empty fauxpology; he's actually been working to not be a dick (or at least it looks a lot like he's trying not to be a dick). He's taken 8 meetings with gay activists from all over the world, and his company's diversity and inclusion board will "establish a more active, global leadership position on diversity, inclusion and social responsibility."

All good things, at least on the surface, but my favorite aspect of this story is how Barilla has basically blamed Parma, Italy's weirdness for his backward attitude toward the LGBT community. A rep quoted by AdAge said,

The meetings have helped open our eyes and ears to the evolution taking place in the world outside Parma.

That's a-spicy learning experience.

Whether Guido Barilla actually believes his corporate line is yet to be determined, but at least it's better than their previous diversity and inclusion strategy, which may as well have included printing "NO HOMO!" on the penne boxes.

[AdAge]