Barilla People

Our people

"Good for You, Good for the Planet" is the strategy adopted by Barilla to give its contribution to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals
of the Agenda 2030 of the United Nations.
First of all through its People.

Sustainable Development Goals
For Barilla means

Promoting the development of a safe and inclusive work environment, open to diversity and respectful of the work-life balance.

Key issues


Recently, gender inequality in the workplace has decreased worldwide: female employment in Europe has reached levels never recorded before, settling at 64%, while in the United States remains at only 57%. However, the path towards full appreciation of female talents is not yet completed, if we consider that the percentage of women who hold key positions in public institutions in European countries is less than 30%, and only 21% of executives in big companies are women.

Comparison of female vs male employment in Europe

Eurostat, Employment statistics
Women's Bureau, Labor Force Participation Rates

One of the main factors in reducing inequality in the labour market is the availability of organisational tools and solutions that can implement an effective balance between work and private life.

In the absence of active policies that can facilitate a persistent presence of women in the labour market, female employment will increase at a slow pace, reaching 67% in 2023 and exceeding 70% only in 2060.


A work environment inclusive and respectful of everyone’s dignity shall have, as basic prerequisite, full implementation of workers’ safety, health and wellbeing. The manufacturing sector, along with construction and transportation, is the one at the highest risk of non fatal accidents in the workplace: within the manufacturing industries, the rate of accidents in the workplace is 20% in Europe and 25% in the United States.

About 20% of accidents in the workplace in Europe occurs in the manufacturing

Eurostat, Accidents at work statistics


Barilla's main actions
Smart working


We promote reconciliation between professional and private life activities through the development of smart working solutions: by 2020 we are committed to have 95% of our employees stating that they have reached the level of flexibility needed to balance work and private life.

More than 1,700 Barilla People have the opportunity to participate in the smart working project. In 2016 70% of the potential beneficiaries subscribed to the programme.


Diversity and Inclusion


It is our intention to reach equality between men and women in leadership positions by 2020.

To expedite this change, the performance evaluation of some of the company leaders includes objectives concerning equal opportunities and the creation of more flexible work models.

To promote an even more inclusive culture, we have fostered the creation and development of some ERGs, i.e. Employee Resource Groups that focus on the various dimensions of diversity.

35 women every 100 people hold managerial positions

Active interest groups supported by employees:

  • The Balance group was set up to promote work-life correct balance;
  • Supporting LGBTI employees: VOCE
  • Supporting Latino and African American minorities in 2016 the following group was set up: ALLEANZA

Health and Safety


We adopted management systems to prevent accidents in the workplace and protect our people’s health and safety.

86% of Barilla People work in plants with OHSAS:18001 certified management systems.  

The frequency of accidents was reduced by 47% compared to 2010.

We promote the wellbeing of every Barilla employee also through information programmes on correct eating habits.

The healthy eating education programme sì.mediterraneo reached more than 7,300 People at Barilla. 

Our collaborations




Human Rights Campaign


Parks – Liberi e uguali


To promote the highest female participation in business leadership positions and the appreciation for female talent, by sharing solutions and good practices adopted by international companies.

To develop an inclusive work environment for workers, regardless of sexual orientation.

To interact with other companies on policies and good practices with the goal to maximise business potentials originating from the full integration and enhancement of all dimensions of diversity.


  • Participation in initiatives of dialogue and research promoted within the networks.
  • Sharing of good practices.
  • Participation in the Board of Directors of 30%Club Italy.
  • Participation in dialogue and assessment of company policies towards integration and appreciation of diversity.

G4-16 |


Policies adopted by Barilla and the activities put in place to promote full respect and integration of LGBT employees have received the highest rating achieved by a company in the “Corporate Equality Index”, prepared by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (100/100).

In the State of Illinois (USA), Barilla ranked second in the Healthiest Employers Award for its commitment in promoting health in the workplace.

For the second year in a row, the Ames mill in Iowa (USA) received the  safety award established by the International Association of Operative Millers, in recognition of Barilla’s commitment to promote health and safety in the workplace.

Barilla do Brasil received the recognition of “empresa amiga da diversidade” from the Federal Council of the Brazilian Bar Association for its appreciation and promotion of diversity, and for the creation of an inclusive work environment.

Diversity and Inclusion

There is a wealth of diversity out there, and that is the riches we want to bring into the company”

Claudio Colzani, CEO 

Equality, inclusion and diversity not only have always been an integral part of the Barilla’s values and Code of Ethics, but they also represent a decisive factor for our way of doing business and growth model. In 2013 we started a journey of introspection and discovery: in each step along this path we found opportunities to confirm our resolve towards diversity and inclusion, in the respect people’s physical, moral and cultural integrity.

We started various collaborations with external organisations with the goal to achieve specific results. We put in place significant changes in policies and in company’s procedures, we increased the awareness of inclusion of diversity as a business directive, by appointing a Chief Diversity Officer, who reports directly to the CEO and a Global Diversity & Inclusion Board.



Many of the leaders of the Group, and the CEO is one of them, have objectives tied to inclusion of diversity in their performance evaluation. Furthermore, Barilla has been promoting training on this matter for all its employees. 

Percentage of managers actively engaged in promoting diversity, based on the internal annual survey on diversity and inclusion


To us a very important commitment is the appreciation of female talent, so we set challenging targets, to become a company even more inclusive towards women in the short term. 

Female presence among managerial positions and talents
Women in leadershipWomen in the Global Talent Pool


In 2014 the Smart Working was created with the goal to promote a more inclusive work environment, allowing the employees more autonomy on how to handle their own work activities, such as how, where and when they work, adapting their working methods according to personal and corporate needs and, at the same time, meet their objectives. 

% of the employees declare to have the flexibility they need to manage a correct work-life balance

David Mixner
Advisory Board Members
Patricia Bellinger
Advisory Board Members
Kristen Anderson
Chief Diversity Officer di Barilla
Civil rights activist

David Mixner is an author, political strategist, civil rights activist and advisor. Once named by Newsweek as the most powerful gay man in America, he has been a global leader in politics and human rights. He has lectured at Oxford, Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton. Today, he works on HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment projects across the globe.

Exec. Director, Center for Public Leadership, Harvard Kennedy School

Patricia teaches on Diversity & Leadership as an Adjunct Lecturer at HKS. She served first as Group VP of Global D&I, then as Group VP of Executive Development at BP London. Under her leadership, BP was awarded the coveted Catalyst award for the advancement of women and progress in global diversity. Patricia is a non–executive director of Paris–based Sodexo SA.

Employee <br/> turnover rates
Employee turnover rates

Barilla People broken down by type of employment contract

7,565 Barilla People hired with  permanent contracts

481 with fixed term contracts

Scope: Barilla G. e R. Fratelli (not Barilla Holding) excluding Mexico. Based on domestic legislation in force in the USA the distinction between permanent and fixed term contracts is not applicable: employment relation can be terminated at any time by either party without cause. For this document Barilla People in the United States have been considered employees with permanent contracts. 

Compared to 2015

Increase in staff: +1.6% 


New hires and turnover of staff with permanent contracts

Turnover trends and rate of staff with permanent contracts:


New hires and turnover of staff with permanent contracts broken down by geographical area, gender and age bracket


Barilla G.e R. Fratelli except staff in Mexico. 

New hires and turnover of staff with fixed term contracts broken down by geographical areas


New hires and turnover of staff with fixed term contracts broken down by gender

Barilla G.e R. Fratelli except staff in Mexico

Barilla People in the world
Barilla People in the world

Staff broken down by region and type of employment contract

Barilla G. e R. Fratelli excluding Mexico. Based on domestic legislation in force in the USA the distinction between permanent and fixed term contracts is not applicable: employment relation can be terminated at any time by either party without cause. For this document Barilla People in the United States have been considered employees with permanent contracts.

Barilla People broken down by region and gender

Barilla G. e R. Fratelli excluding Mexico

Main variances compared to 2015

Countries with highest staff increases
Russia +29%
Countries with highest staff decreases
China - 37%


Enhancing female talent
Enhancing female talent

Barilla People broken down by occupational category

  2015 2016
 Totalof whom women
White collar1,6891,834787
Blue force5,0915,2711,467
Sales force530415107

Female presence in executive and managerial roles



Female presence in the Global Talent Pool

Compared to 2015
Female presence in the Global Talent Pool: 41% in 2015 and 40% in 2016


Performance assements and management
Performance assements and management

To offer a clear picture of the roles, responsibilities and tasks assigned to Barilla employees we mapped 1,900 organizational positions and framed them into corresponding job descriptions.

We also defined professional growth paths within the Group and to promote enhancement of internal talents we favour covering vacant positions with internal staff. In 2016, 46% of vacant office positions were filled via internal staff selection, without having to recruit outside the company.

The periodic assessment of the individual's contribution to the achievement of the company’s objectives is a key element in professional growth. In 2016 the performance management system involved 1,844 people.

46% of vacant office positions were filled via internal staff selection

1,844 Barilla People covered by an annual performance management system

Individual performance evaluations and monetary bonuses that may derive, are meant to recognize personal contribution to the realization of the corporate objectives set for the year, including the effective implementation of the “Good for You, Good for the Planet” mission.

In 2016 a total of 2,620 Barilla People in the plants took part in incentive programmes inclusive of sustainability targets, connected, for example, to the improvement of health and safety performance or the quality and food safety of the products.

2,620 Parilla People in the plants participate in incentive programmes inclusive of sustainability targets.

37% Overall weight of all the sustainability objectives in the determination of the variable bonus.


Promotion of health and safety
Promotion of health and safety

We are fully committed to guaranteeing a work environment that protects health and safety for the people who work in our production sites and in the Group’s offices or are members of our sales network.

To reach this objective we have adopted in 86% of our plants management production systems certified in compliance with international technical standard OHSAS 18001 and we set aside specific resources to promote health and safety in the workplace, with investments that exceeded 11 million Euro in 2016.

86% of Barilla plant workers operate in production sites with OHSAS 18001 certification

2015 data: 88% of Barilla People

97% of plants and offices checked during the year with site inspections and audits for safety and fire prevention

Thanks to these efforts, the number of accidents in the workplace was reduced by 11% compared to the previous year. Also in 2016 there were no cases of fatal accidents recorded and in more than 8 production plants there were no accidents for at least one year. In 2016 there were no significant sanctions for violations of health and safety norms in the workplace, however, 3 sanctions were received for a total amount of 8,059 Euro.

133 accidents in the workplace in 2016, vs 149 in the previous year.

In 8 production plants there were no accidents for at least one year.

Trend of severity and frequency indexes


Compared to 2010
Reduction of severity index of accidents: -24% in 2015, -29% in 2016
Reduction of frequency index: -41% in 2015, -47% in 2016

The involvement and training of those who work in the Group on the standards of conduct and the solutions adopted to make the work environment safe are key elements to increase accident prevention and to promote Barilla People’s health and safety. In 2016 more than 56,000 training hours were dedicated to these topics.

The entire Group’s staff has been engaged in activities of healthy eating education as part of the sì.mediterraneo programme. Particularly, in 2016 more than 12 seminars and training courses on various aspects of nutrition were organised for the staff of headquarters, plants and sales network. With the help of external experts various matters were treated in-depth, among which, for example: the relation between health and sugar intake, the health effects of following the Mediterranean Diet and other dietary models, practical suggestions on a healthy diet and the beneficial effects of rye on the metabolism and the reduction of the risk of diabetes.

More than 56,000 training hours on health, safety in the workplace and fire prevention

2015 data: 57,000 hours

Accidents broken down by geographical area

Severity index broken down by geographical area

Frequency index broken down by geographical area

Trade unions relations
Trade unions relations

Barilla manages trade unions relations with three levels of dialogue:

  1. CAE (European Works Council);
  2. la CSN (National Trade Union Confederation), with the support of national and local trade union secretariats (43 representatives of Italian Unitary Workplace Union Structures, RSUs);
  3. Site-specific Unitary Workplace Union Structures, RSUs, are present in 10 plants, 4 mills, offices and amongst salespersons. The Steering Committee of the Unitary Workplace Union Structures (RSUs) meets 2 times a year, and plans meetings on themes connected to the country’s economic and social context, performance trends and analysis of the indicators and strategies of the plants. The local Unitary Workplace Union Structures (RSUs) are also in charge of taking on subjects related to their individual sites, such as training courses, site environment and safety, occupational impacts and site-specific matters.

By keeping efficient exchange and listening channels, in 2016 only 0.1% of work hours was lost to strikes or disputes.



Training is a component we believe is essential to the satisfaction and development of our people. For this we have dedicated a company department to the activities of “Learning and Development” and we created “Academies” for the main Job Families.  


Average training hours for Barilla People in Italy


94,5% dof staff hired in Italy participated in training activities in 2016
Scope: Barilla Italia 

Training hours broken out by type 

Perimetro: Brilla Italia