Established in 1877, family-owned Barilla has brought delicious pasta, sauces and baked goods to the world for more than 140 years. Based in the city of Parma, the company is now run by its fourth generation, faithful to its original commitment to quality, innovation and sustainability.

“We are inspired by the values of the founders of the company and invest heavily in technology and product quality to ensure the continuous growth and development of our products in our business markets,” Barilla Group Chairman Guido Barilla said.

Barilla first ventured outside Italy in 1969, with the opening of its commercial office in France. Then, in the mid-1990s, Barilla opened its overseas operations in Japan. Ever since that strategic move to Asia more than 20 years ago, the company has found great success in Japan and continues to strengthen its brand among its clients and consumers.

Today, Barilla reports more than $4 billion in turnover, 45 percent of which is generated in Italy and the remaining 55 percent outside the country. The company is growing around 2 percent every year thanks to  its commitment to the “Good for You, Good for the Planet” sustainability plan, which strengthens its relationship with farmers and reduces salt, sugar and saturated fats, such as palm oil, in its products.

“Along the chain, we invest a lot in the quality of the product. We make small steps along the way and every year, we do something better,” Guido Barilla said. Barilla has a presence around the world, mainly in its largest markets through subsidiaries and factories that contribute to its supply chain. With its operations now split between pasta and sauces (55 percent) and baked goods (45 percent), Barilla wants to invest more to grow outside its home country.

“We are extremely open to foreign markets. We have great respect for Japanese culture and we look to the Japanese for inspiration on how to run a business and serve the customer,” Guido Barilla said.

“The linkage between Italian and Japanese culture is magical. As much as we love the Japanese for their cuisine and capability to produce good food and provide great tastes around the world, I believe the Japanese can also find a good offering in Italian food and brands. They will find extreme joy,” he added.