ETHICS AND BUSINESS
Table of contents
1.1. What is «Ethics»?
1.2. Business Ethics
1.3. The Code of Ethics
1.4. The Barilla «style»
1.5. Sharing the Code of Ethics
2. Our commitment
3.1. Honesty and transparency
3.2. Social responsibility
3.3. The centrality of people
3.4. Employees’ rights
3.5. Environment preservation
3.6. Compliance with enforced laws, codes and
4. Rules and Code of behavior
4.1. Relations with Stakeholders
4.2. Marketing and Communication
4.3. Information and accounting records
4.4. Internal audit
4.5. Bribery and misappropriation
4.6. Diversity and equal opportunities
4.7. Diligence and fairness in contracts
5. Implementation and control procedures
5.1 Scope of implementation of the Code of Ethics
5.2 Establishment of the Internal Control Committee with
5.3. Reporting of violations of the Code of Ethics
5.4. Communication and dissemination of the Code of
6. Appendix of details as per Italian Decree 231/2001
6.1. Protecting the Company’s capital, Creditors and the
6.2. Relations with Public Institutions
6.3. Conflict of interest
6.4. Gifts, presents and other forms of favors (benefits)
Since 1877, Barilla has been manufacturing food products,
offering a nutritionally balanced diet to consumers all over
Honesty, transparency, innovation, social and
environmental responsibility are the values in which Barilla
reflects itself, as results of a strong and widely recognized
cultural identity. This identity, as an outgrowth of the
founders’ entrepreneurial style, has been progressively
reinforced over 125 years of traditions, experience and
actions, becoming one of the firm’s fundamental resources.
Nowadays, due to the growth of business and marketplace,
Barilla operates in many environments in constant and rapid
development. Therefore, due to the complexity of this
scenario, it is essential to clearly define the corporate values
that Barilla accepts, acknowledges and shares, as well as the
responsibilities assumed by Barilla, both within and outside
For this reason the present Code of Ethics (hereinafter called
the “Code”) has been adopted, as an essential instrument to
share and clarify Barilla’s principles and values.
1.1 What is “Ethics”?
«Ethics» includes the whole set of rules of practice - whether
public or private – followed by individuals or groups.
This term, generally used in a number of different contexts,
refers to all rules and principles, which should be followed
in everyday human life. Although based upon an abstract
concept (composed by principles and ideals), ethics’
application is everything but theoretical: it is strictly related
to everyday life and transferred into concrete codes of
Accordingly to the words of the German philosopher,
Immanuel Kant, an “ethical behavior” means an act of an
individual inspired not by fears of punishment or by
opportunistic hope of rewards, but rather by his own
consciousness, “in such a way to treat mankind, either
himself or the others, as an end and never as a mere mean to
achieve an end”.
1.2 Business ethics
When considerations about ethics apply to the broader field
of business, rather than to individuals’ acts, concepts of
responsibility and individual awareness shall be bound up
to the concepts of “Company’s Social Responsibility” and
For Barilla’s Group, Social Responsibility means the
capability to perform its business activities in full respect for
the legitimate interests of its partners and costumers, as well
as in protecting and preserving environmental sources for
In other words, Barilla, when performing its business
activities, gives due respect for all living creatures and
considers the value of inanimate things, doing this as its own
acts’ end, rather than a strategy to achieve mere profit.
1.3 The Code of Ethics
Within the context of business activities, unethical conduct
could lead to “potentially opportunistic” behaviors, dictated
by the erroneous conviction that one is acting in Company’s
favor or advantage.
Therefore, the Code of Ethics is of paramount importance in
reaffirming that the conviction that one is acting in favor or
to the advantage of Barilla can never, in any way, justify acts
or behavior that conflict with these accepted and shared
The following document is not intended to improve
compliance with the law or enhance Barilla’s reputation, due
to the fact that legal responsibility, full respect of the law
and fairness – as well as the high quality of the products –
are already essential prerequisites for the very existence of
Barilla and therefore these concepts cannot be considered as
objective of a Code of Ethics.
Therefore, the first and foremost objective of the present
Code of Ethics is to share and divulge the values Barilla
acknowledges and accepts, at all levels, in order to remind to
all Barilla’s employees to perform their actions and decisions
and consider and respect their own interests, rights and
duties, as well as those of everyone else.
In other words, everyone shall be aware that welfare and
respect for the communities has to be always expressly
considered in every day’s activities.
1.4 The Barilla «style»
Style, as Pietro Barilla used to say, is a behavior, which
imply “many little things”.
Today, it is essential to collect all those little things, in order
to clarify Barilla’s way towards the future as well as to
ensure a fair competition in the present industrial
marketplace, which is much more responsible and mature.
Therefore, it implies to perform business’ activities with
dignity, in strict compliance with the rules, and most of all it
implies to conform Barilla’s behavior to the shared
principles and values, which inspire spontaneous consent,
far away from a mere obedience and duty.
Through the sharing and application of the principles set
forth in this document, Barilla clearly defines its “style”.
1.5 Sharing the code of Ethics
Therefore, this document aims to be a rational incentive in
determining when a behavior is fair and correct, as well as
the reason for it.
The primary objective is to introduce an ethic evaluation
either in deciding one’s own appropriate behavior or in
evaluating someone else’s actions, integrating, in this way,
the moral and the business sphere, the individual to the
corporate responsibility and the personal sphere to the
Group’s one: this operation will allow to translate reasoning
into a real ethic action.
This document shall be consequently a “moral contract”,
subscribed by all Barilla’s Personnel1, from external
collaborators to suppliers. It is intended to be a personal
moral pledge. It will not directly enhance Barilla’s
competitive position, but it will certainly have an indirect
influence as long as it will be able to encourage everyone in
adopting an ethical point of view and a shared culture of
1 The term Company Personnel refers to Administrators, Auditors,
Executive Officers and all other employees.
Through “our commitment”, Barilla intends to declare the
purposes and shared objectives of everyone who work
within the Group, as well as of those who maintain external
relations on behalf of Barilla, either individual or group.
Barilla commits itself to be a quality-focused provider of
food products of superior quality and excellent flavor, which
can contribute to a nutritionally balanced diet, while
enhancing the full respect for environment and the dignity
of the people.
Barilla intends to focus mainly on two areas of its business:
• Italian first course
• Bakery products
People are Barilla’s activities’ main and constant point of
Our products’ consumers shall have four basic rights: right
to safety; right to be informed; right to choose; and right to
be listened to.
Barilla’s human resources
Barilla’s human resources (such as Company’s employees,
etc.) represent our central source towards development and
Barilla recognizes cultural and skills diversity as an essential
value in the company’s life and intends to attract and
develop leadership potentiality, passion for food products
and the intellectual curiosity of each employee.
Fairness, transparency and respect must inspire every
decision and action, in a context of mutual trust and
Products represent our daily commitment and all our efforts
aim to their improvement.
Barilla seeks to concentrate its activities in innovation, in
order to obtain top-quality products, perceived as distinctive
by its customers and consumers.
Barilla’s brands constitute company’s identity.
Coherence of products and quality of communication will
guarantee continuous support for all our brands.
Barilla is committed to carry out its activities in full respect
of the environment and human health, being aware of its
social and ethical responsibilities towards the communities
where it operates and from which it draws resources.