Luca Virginio, Chief Communication and External Relations Officer at Barilla Group and the Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition Foundation Vice Chairman, raised his voice to create an international force for food change. Virginio passed away on September 17, 2019, and his legacy stands as a reminder that everyone is responsible for a better food system—and joining together is the only way to improve the food system.
“Luca was a true and profound Barilla man,” says Guido Barilla, President of the Barilla Group. “A tireless, passionate, and determined worker who helped us all follow a path of values, transparency, and quality.”
Luca Virginio was born in Florence in 1965. After graduating in Law at the University of Parma in 1989, he worked for Procter & Gamble until joining the Barilla Group as Director of Communication and External Relations in 2008. Over time, Virginio accumulated responsibilities and also became the Vice President of the Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition.
Colleagues highly respected Virginio for his professionalism and drive, bringing attention to international social and environmental sustainability through his work for the Barilla Group. At the 2015 Food Tank Washington, DC Summit, Virginio challenged politicians to invest their time into combating high-priority food issues and achieving sustainability commitments.
“It’s not going to be easy to get certain countries to limit the use of land for biofuel production, or to get financial institutions to accept strict limits on financial speculation, or to have certain companies slash food waste. But if we all work together—each doing our part—it can be done!” said Virginio at the 2015 Food Tank DC Summit.
“We need to join forces to ensure that what seemed like a dream until yesterday can become a reality in the interest of every individual, but especially in the interest of the new generation today and tomorrow,” said Virginio.
Danielle Nierenberg, President of Food Tank, recalls Virginio’s impact on the organization. “Luca believed in Food Tank’s mission from the beginning, and he and BCFN have been incredibly supportive of our work. We will miss his smile, his camaraderie, and his dedication to making the food system better for all,” says Nierenberg.
Photo courtesy of ANSA.