A story of a family

The history of the Ferrero Group is a story of success in its third generation, in which the development of a multinational company perfectly combines with the past, present and future of a tenacious Piedmontese family.

We have to return to the ‘40s to discover the roots of this success. These were the years when Piera and Pietro, Michele’s parents, transformed a pastry shop into a factory. The Ferrero’ Family was the first Italian manufacturer after World War II to open production sites and offices abroad in the confectionary sector, turning the Company into a truly international Group. These first and decisive steps forward were thanks to the products “invented” by Pietro Ferrero and his son Michele, who was then very young. Another key to success was the effective sales network organized by Giovanni, Pietro’s brother, who died in 1949.


Following the success of the company in Italy, Michele Ferrero decided to start producing also abroad. In 1956 a large plant in Germany was inaugurated and a short time later a plant in France. It was the prelude to a rapid expansion of Ferrero in Europe, with the establishment of commercial offices and production centers in Belgium, The Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, United Kingdom, Ireland and Spain. In the following decades Ferrero becomes global, with companies and plants in North and South America, South East Asia, Eastern Europe, Africa, Australia; and, more recently, in Turkey, Mexico and China.


During 2015, Ferrero opened the dawn of a new era for our company through two important acquisitions. In March, the Company obtained the final approval to start the integration process with Oltan, the leading company for collecting, roasting and trading hazelnuts in Turkey. The second acquisition, as of August, was Thorntons, the chocolate confectionary company founded in 1911 in the United Kingdom. Thorntons, employing more than 3.300 people, is now part of our extended family. We both have rich family histories and share a strong commitment to delighting customers with high quality, premium confectionary products.

Ferrero is now steadily ranked among the first companies in the world for its reputation. Certainly, this is due also to the social responsibility initiatives of the Group. These are summarized in Ferrero’s CSR strategy, which is focused on the highest quality and innovation, transparent communication, the care for people that have made and are still making the Group’s history, the support of local communities, the promotion of active lifestyles amongst young people as well as its strong engagement towards sustainable agricultural practices and the protection of the environment.


Today, Giovanni Ferrero continues to run the Company successfully, aiming to reach goals that are even more ambitious and ensuring that the company inspiration and motivation that was so strongly shared with his father Michele and his brother. Today, just as yesterday, it is a structure based on solid family values.


The core values

Our constant attention towards consumers’ needs is at the foundation of our company policy, inspired by maximum transparency and excellence in quality.

Our loyalty towards consumers and the trust they place in our products through their everyday purchases are at the core of the long-lasting relation that we enjoy with them.

Our Company practices are based on a mutual trust between colleagues, full dedication and transparency towards the Group, as well as towards all civil society stakeholders with whom we interact daily.

Based on our respect of the principle of equality of treatment, we promote the professional and personal development of our human resources. This also reinforces our strong ties with the local Communities in the territories where we operate

We are committed to avoiding any form of discrimination in our employment practices, in all the Companies of our Group, starting from the initial moment of recruitment. The primary goal of our employment strategy is to establish long-lasting relations, inspired by the principles of professional growth and recognition of merit.

We guarantee our employees the freedom to belong to Trade Unions and we recognize the role of Unions in contractual matters.

The protection of human health and the respect for the environment are at the core of our operational practices. We manage our facilities through the use of sustainable resources, such as water, energy, raw and other materials, including the use of renewable resources. We strive for a reduction in our environmental impact in all forms, in particular by reducing emissions, eliminating waste and correctly managing waste products

We support the protection of human dignity, as well as the absolute and unconditional respect of human rights, wherever the Ferrero Group companies operate.

We support the abolition of the exploitation of child labour and of forced and coercive labour, within our sphere of influence and along the entire production chain, through specific legal means and close relations with local Communities.

Our communications with consumers, including advertising, respect the values of human dignity, family and children, in line with our moral and ethical principles. They are based on advising the proper use of our products and inspired by the promotion of a healthy lifestyle.

Our advocacy practices towards International, National and Local Institutions are based on solid scientific knowledge and always inspired by intellectual and behavioural integrity, as well as transparency.

Our goal is to create unique products, developing innovative research and production processes as well as using our own technologies. For us, the aspects that make this journey interesting are the passion for research, the desire to break down pre-existing paradigms, and the exploration of new places far from the traditional fenced-in disciplines.

We apply consolidated quality and traceability procedures, in order to preserve the organoleptic and nutritional characteristics of our raw materials.

A fundamental element of our success is the careful selection of the highest quality raw materials, sourced with full respect for a strict ethical code concerning their origin, harvesting and manufacturing.

Within the global context of growing attention to themes such as nutrition and physical activity, we focus our research strategy and our production investments on the creation of high quality products, carefully developed in terms of their nutritional value and portioning, so that they can be integrated into a balanced diet, with particular attention to the needs of children and families.
Ferrero has been built by generations of people who share this commitment. Commitment that translates to pursuit of our business objectives without losing sight of our guiding principles.

This entrepreneurship can be linked to the word “initiative”, a value which in itself embodies the concepts of enterprise and entrepreneurship, that impulse to act on one’s own initiative in order to maximize results.
The difference between a brilliant strategy and success lies in the ability to establish a clear vision, in being proactive with your investments, in being timely with your undertakings, in being excellent in your execution.

The Ferrero Group has seen such success because of its solid and deeply rooted culture of “learning by doing”. A crucial element of sustainability in Ferrero’s model is the accumulation of technical skills and knowledge of products, markets, and consumers over time that guide us from “creating value” to strengthening the “value of creation”.
A great collective entity animated by a trust in progress and by the ability to envision a tomorrow that is better than today. This is because the world will always be conquered by those that desire success and affirmation, and those that have the determination to continuously seek excellence.

We identify ourselves with the motto: “Work, create, donate”, conceived and introduced by Michele Ferrero at the very beginning of his business pursuits. In essence we favour the “ethics of doing” over the “practice of appearing”.

This same philosophy has inspired, and still inspires:

  • the Ferrero Foundation, devoted to maintaining the Group’s relations with its retirees through social and cultural programmes, as well as to strengthening ties with the local communities in which we operate;
  • the “Progetto Imprenditoriale Michele Ferrero”, based on investments and use of the deriving resources to improve the living conditions of the communities of developing countries, with particular attention to children;
  • the whole Ferrero Group constantly engaged in social responsibility activities, as an integral part of our own way of being and of operating, since the very beginning.


Sharing Values to Create Value

For the Ferrero Group, the term corporate social responsibility has always stood for caring for people and for the local area, namely employees and former employees, consumers, families and the local communities in which it operates. These principles of social responsibility guided Ferrero's first steps in Alba and remain unchanged to this day.

The Ferrero Group’s approach to sustainability is currently based on the company’s social responsibility strategy: “Sharing values to create value”.

For Ferrero, the creation of shared value is a practice that affects all stages of the supply chain: it goes from caring for the people who have made and continue to make the history of the Group, the support of local communities, the promotion of active lifestyles among youths and their families, all the way to its strong commitment to sustainable farming practices and safeguarding and protecting the environment.

Our corporate social responsibility strategy is currently divided into two main subject areas: People and the Planet.

At Ferrero, customer focus isn't just a value, it's something we put into practice every day, based on a sense of responsibility that goes beyond commercial goals. This responsibility is made into reality through Ferrero's nutritional strategy, ongoing innovation, the quality and freshness of its products, food safety and responsible and transparent communication. In addition, Ferrero shows a constant interest in the lives of its current employees and former employees and people living in the communities in which it operates. This commitment is also demonstrated through the activities of the Ferrero Foundation and the Michele Ferrero Entrepreneurial Project, active in Africa and Asia. The Group also continues its commitment to the promotion of active lifestyles by addressing young people and their families through the global Kinder+Sport “Joy of moving” program.

Monitoring and improving the impact of its activities throughout the entire supply chain is a priority for the Ferrero Group, which it addresses by ensuring that its main raw materials are responsibly sourced. In addition, the Group is committed to production that respects the environment, by making use of the best technologies available, ensuring that the use of energy, materials and natural resources is efficient and by consuming water resources responsibly and reasonably. Acknowledging this responsibility, Ferrero is strongly committed to minimising its environmental impact, from raw materials to production plants and logistics, along the entire value chain.

Visit www.ferrerocsr.com