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Ferrero. A Global Giant with Family Roots and Social Heart.

Ferrero, The Father of The Iconic Nutella

.The smiley face of Michele Ferrero, father of the iconic Nutella, is the cover of the beautiful book written by Salvatore Gianella: “Michele Ferrero. Condividere Valori per creare Valore”

In the rolling hills of Alba, Piedmont, Italy, stands a house that gazes upon the bustling Nutella factory.

This house, and the man who peered out its windows, transformed the confectionery world.


Kinder chocolate bars. Growing up with these tiny, choco-milk infused “kinderini” Ferrero

Michele Ferrero, the creative genius behind beloved products like Nutella, Kinder eggs, Kinder chocolate bars… was more than an innovator; he was a man dedicated to humility, family, and social responsibility.

Through the intimate recollections of his widow, Maria Franca Fissolo Ferrero, who released a touching and in-depth interview to Il Corriere della Sera, we gain insight into a life marked by empathy, resilience, and profound social consciousness.

The Power of Family and Innovation

At the heart of Ferrero’s success is its unwavering commitment to family.

Michele Ferrero, with his boundless curiosity and passion for innovation, spearheaded the company’s growth from a small Italian business to a global powerhouse. His wife, Maria Franca, played an instrumental role in supporting and guiding this journey, sharing in both the triumphs and challenges.

Their partnership was marked by deep mutual respect and a shared vision of creating products that bring joy and comfort to millions. Despite their immense success, the Ferrero family  chose to lead with humility and discretion. Michele’s preference for staying out of the limelight and his aversion to showcasing their wealth set a tone of modesty and integrity.

This ethos is reflected in the company’s culture, where the focus remains on quality, innovation, and the well-being of employees and consumers alike.

A Legacy of Social Responsibility

Ferrero’s impact on society is profound, driven by a strong sense of social responsibility. The establishment of the “Fondazione Piera, Pietro e Giovanni Ferrero” is a testament to this commitment.

Named in honor of their son Pietro, who passed away tragically at a young age, the foundation aims to enhance the quality of life for the elderly, integrating them into community activities and providing comprehensive support. This initiative highlights Ferrero’s belief in giving back and supporting those who have contributed to the company’s success.

Moreover, Ferrero’s approach to business incorporates a holistic view of corporate social responsibility. The company invests in sustainable practices, from sourcing raw materials ethically to ensuring environmentally friendly production processes. This dedication to sustainability not only benefits the planet but also strengthens Ferrero’s reputation as a responsible and forward-thinking enterprise.

Global Reach with Family Values

Ferrero’s growth into a global brand is a remarkable feat. With products sold in over 170 countries, the company’s influence is felt worldwide.

Yet, despite its expansive reach, Ferrero remains firmly rooted in its family values.

This unique combination of global presence and family ownership creates a distinct corporate culture that prioritizes long-term vision over short-term gains.

The company’s ability to innovate continuously while maintaining its core values is a key factor in its sustained success. From the creation of Nutella, which has become a household staple, to the introduction of Kinder eggs that delight children globally, Ferrero has consistently pushed the boundaries of creativity and consumer satisfaction.

Each product embodies the company’s commitment to quality and the joy of simple pleasures.

Nutella: A Sweet Revolution

In Italy, generations have grown up with the tradition of “pane e Nutella” for merenda, the sweet afternoon snack.

This simple yet delightful treat, which originated in Turin, has become a cherished part of Italian culture.

Nutella, with its rich, creamy texture and irresistible taste, has made chocolate accessible and affordable, democratizing a luxury that was once out of reach for many.

In the 1950s, Michele Ferrero observed children gazing longingly into confectionery shop windows, unable to afford the expensive chocolate treats. Determined to bring joy to these children, he created Nutella, a product that revolutionized the industry.

Despite criticism as a mass-produced item, Nutella holds a special place in our hearts for its role in transforming chocolate from a rare indulgence to an everyday pleasure.

A Model for Future Generations

Ferrero’s story serves as an inspiring model for future generations of entrepreneurs. It demonstrates that success is not solely measured by financial achievements but also by the positive impact on society and the environment. Michele Ferrero’s vision, supported by Maria Franca’s resilience and dedication, has created a legacy that transcends products and profits.

The company’s continued growth under the leadership of their son Giovanni Ferrero ensures that the founding principles remain intact. Giovanni’s commitment to innovation and social responsibility echoes his parents’ values, guiding Ferrero into a future where it can continue to make a difference on a global scale.

Ferrero’s journey from a small family business to a global confectionery leader is a testament to the power of innovation, family values, and social responsibility. Michele and Maria Franca Ferrero’s legacy is one of humility, resilience, and unwavering commitment to improving the world through their work. As Ferrero continues to delight consumers worldwide with its beloved products, it also stands as a symbol of how a family-run enterprise can achieve monumental success while staying true to its core principles. Through their dedication to improving the world around them, the Ferrero family have left an indelible mark on both the confectionery industry and the broader social fabric.

Your Turn to Share

Now, we’d love to hear from you. Have you grown up with the tradition of “pane e Nutella” (bread and chocolate spread) for your afternoon snack? What are your favorite memories or stories related to Ferrero products? Share your thoughts and join the conversation on how this beloved brand has touched your life.

Also, keep in mind that a chocolate tour is a delightful must do when visiting Turin and we are offering the most loved in the city: try it and you’ll see why chocolate and sweet lovers appreciate it so much!

Ps: we’ll not serve you Ferrero’s products, though. But chocolate gems & other sweet treats carefully selected among the small chocolate artisans in Turin.

See you soon for a chocolicious adventure!

Thanks for reading,

Cecilia 🍫