For a good many Americans, their first instance of brand awareness when it comes to Barilla pasta came in the form of anti-gay comments
from its president, Guido Barilla. The company is now in damage control, trying to shift public perception after public calls for boycotts.
To that end, Barilla has established a “diversity and inclusion board.”
According to CNN Money
, the company intends to “establish concrete goals and strategies for improving diversity and equality in the company's workforce and culture."
Gay activist David Mixner has reportedly joined the board.
Barilla has also appointed a chief diversity officer and will take part in the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index, which assesses how LGBT-friendly they are.
"As a socially responsible company that serves and respects diverse consumers, we know we have to expand our commitment," a company spokesman said.
In Guido Barilla’s initial comments, he said the company wouldn’t feature a gay couple in an ad because the company speaks to the “classic family.”